I remember the first time I met David Iacovazzi-Pau and saw his art. (That alone is a news worthy event because I have a bad memory. Let me be truthful here; I remembered some of the exhibition and had to look up the rest.)
It took place at the Art Beat Gallery on Bardstown Road (now defunct) in 2003. We were both newbies then. I had been writing for LEO Weekly for about a year and Iacovazzi-Pau was having his first solo show in Louisville. “Rach III, Third Concerto in D minor,” a painting he did on Russian musician Sergei Rachmaninoff, was the standout of the exhibition. It is currently housed in the Music Department at IU Southeast as part of the school’s permanent collection.
He impressed me as being extremely talented and intelligent. Still does.
Fast forward to his upcoming exhibition “David Iacovazzi-Pau: Paintings on Canvas and Paper.” It is chock-full of paintings of fellow artists with a few self-portraits. “The show consist of 21 artworks, eight works on paper and 13 paintings from 2012 to 2015,” he explains. “Most of them are new and haven’t been shown before. The portraits are not only of individuals who embody our cultural community but a subjective impression of an individual and reflect what I sense about that person. Additionally, it represents the relationship between the subject and myself.”
What is great about an Iacovazzi-Pau exhibition is viewers get to see his creativity through preliminary drawings to finished paintings.
“David Iacovazzi-Pau is a portrait painter, and a gifted one at that,” says Carnegie curator Daniel Pfalzgraf. “But what interests me the most in what David does is seeing his work as a process. He doesn’t just make a one-off portrait of his subject, and then leave it at that. He spends a great deal of time drawing and painting multiple studies from various visits with his subjects, not just getting a physical understanding of them, but also developing a sense of their inner identity and personality through the time spent with them. He’s particularly adept in providing just the right amount of information needed for the viewer to get a real sense of who that person is. All the subjects in this series of paintings are people who are rooted within our local cultural community, so many of them will be recognizable to our visitors. I have a feeling, though, that even if you didn’t know the subjects personally before the show, you will still leave here with a deeper understanding of the kind of people they truly are.”
The opening reception is Friday, July 24, from 6–8 p.m.
This show features an important step in his artistic life — an exhibition catalog. Iacovazzi-Pau will have a book signing at the Carnegie on Thursday, August 13, beginning at 6 p.m. There will also be an interview with Gunnar Deatherage, whose portrait is in the show, at 6:30 p.m. (the event is free but pre-registration is required).
After the exhibition’s stay at the Carnegie, it will travel to Swanson Contemporary (on display Nov. 6 – Dec. 12) and the Jewish Community Center’s Patio Gallery (Jan. 3 – Feb. 9).