Val Sivilli

Val Sivilli


Val’s Studio at 692 Riegelsville Road is the tan stucco building just north of the red brick house.

Within the body of the Circus exists a microcosm of the entire universe. The definition of “Human” can be found by dissecting pieces of the Circus. From the earliest role the Jester played within the court to our modern day Cirque de Soleil, therein resides every conceivable metaphor defining our humanity.   It was during the 2016 American Presidential Debates that I began the work:  “An American Side Show Spectacular”. This work led to further investigations in the Circus. These series of paintings are very much a work in progress. Click HERE or on the painting above to view more of the Circus Paintings.

Yet, mostly I tell stories. Sometimes it is a tiny little story, a simple line or two. And sometimes it is a seemingly endless story, a rambling excess of meandering quagmire. Either way, I like it a lot when the text integrates into the image. Then you can view the piece without being distracted by the written word’s reference to spoken language. I try to defer to a simple narrative if possible, although that’s not always possible. It’s the honesty of the moment that engages me. As the painting, or series of paintings, take shape, the story takes shape. They inform each other. Sometimes the narrative finds a happy home in a single painting. Other times it takes a few paintings. Sometimes the story requires more air. Sometimes the story and the painting demand that there be no text in the picture. Creating a resonant and reflective home for what lies beneath and among the breath of the lines is a goal of this work, whether the actual text is embedded into the image or simply the title of the work.

I was born in Brooklyn raised on Long Island. My undergraduate work was at both SUNY Purchase and Alfred University and my graduate work at Mason Gross School of the Arts, Rutgers. I was studio assistant to Nancy Spero and Leon Golub from 1984 to1991 in NYC and actively showed my work in downtown galleries. As a full-time artist living and working in Hunterdon County, I am the founding member of THAT and welcome you to enjoy our very first Open Studio Tour!