Franco Demonte’s paintings are a complex dialogue of abstract landscapes weaving color, texture, and cultural artifacts. Born in Winfield, Illinois, currently living and painting in Puglia, Italy. Franco was raised in an Italian household where trips to Italy introduced him to painting, architecture, and archaeology. Franco studied life-drawing, painting, anatomy, illustration, and painting at the American Academy of Art in Chicago. Inspired by Caravaggio, Michelangelo, Cezanne, Matisse, Van Gogh, Picasso, Emilio Scanavino, and Emilio Vedova. Demonte began drawing at a young age, studying photos and rendering his work from memory. Franco’s first drawing of Roger Rabbit at the age of 7 quickly showed his talent, followed by a self-portrait and a pencil drawing of a young Elvis Presley. Franco poured his interest in Disney books and copied many of the illustrations that inspired his future creations. The artist admired the grace of the Old Masters, the timeless portraits and still life of Botticelli, Titian, and Giotto di Bondone to name a few. In 1999, Franco was invited to paint the Chicago Cows on Display public art exhibition that was presented in Zurich, Switzerland, during the summer of 1998. Demonte’s photography during travels to Italy and Spain has expanded his repertoire into photo-collage, painted glass, and a rich blend of mixed-media landscapes that draws from the chiaroscuro of Caravaggio and the cubism of Picasso. The 2000 years revealed Franco’s movement toward abstraction, painting and mixed media using color and form as influenced by Wassily Kandinsky, Joan Miro, Jean Arp.