Michael J. Hennessy

1968 -

Biography

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Michael was introduced to the world of art by his Grandfather, who, from his wheelchair, gave him his first lesson in art. His 84 year old grandfather was a civil engineer, and, from his wheelchair, drew a box on an old napkin. Five year old Michael was captivated as the box quickly turned into a small house with just a few simple strokes of the pen. It was from that moment that Michael was destined to paint.

Michael’s mother enrolled him in private art classes at the age of 8, where he learned to draw. There he learned about values, shadowing, perspective, and proportion. After graduating from Brown University with a degree in International Relations, he became the Speech Writer to the Ambassador from Thailand to the United Nations. He continued his studies in art and enrolled in continuing education courses at New York’s Art Students League, The New School, and The School of the Visual Arts. His talent became readily apparent, and it was one of his teachers, the late Richard Pionck, who was then also the President of The Salmagundi Club, who encouraged and applauded Michael’s talent. Michael has since become a member of the Salmagundi Club, where he was also a member of its Jurying Committee.

Inspired by painters like John Singer Sargent, Adolf Menzel, and Julius Kronberg, Michael is a representational artist who tries to balance painterly fluidity with exacting realism. Moreover, he looks to the great Hudson River School painters for guidance and knowledge in his landscapes – all the while placing his own unique mark on each work.