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Sebastian Alterera

By age four, Sebastian Andreas Alterera knew he wanted to be an artist. Born in New York City in 1964 to upper-class parents, Alterera spent the early years of his life painting, drawing and learning to play classical guitar. However, this carefree world came to a tragic halt when Alterera’s father unexpectedly passed away when the artist was only 15 years old. With no stable source of income, Alterera’s family was thrust into poverty, and his mother decided that they seek better fortune across the country in San Francisco. This profound loss provided Alterera with an early appreciation for the things in life that are truly important. For example, his art began to reflect the influence of nature on the human mind. The architecture, mountains and ocean in and around San Francisco became an infinite source of inspiration. When the time came, Alterera was accepted into the BFA program at the Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida. His talent was recognized immediately, earning him the Best of Ringling Award two years in a row. Once again, Alterera’s art was fortified by the beaches and water in the area. Upon graduating from Ringling, Alterera entered the MFA program at the prestigious Savannah College of Art and Design. After receiving his MFA there in 1992, he disembarked for further studies in Naples, Italy.

Alterera’s painting flourished in Naples, inspired by the culture and heritage of that region. Taught by the modern master Vaugel, Alterera refined his style and technique, and realized his particular gift for rendering realistic figures. He also began sharing his talents by teaching figure painting to a bevy of students, many of which became professional artists themselves. After spending seven years in Italy, Alterera returned to the U.S., and made a home in Atlanta.

Alterera’s work has evolved dramatically over the years. Although he still prefers to work with the human figure, he has moved on from realistic figures to dynamic, figurative abstracts that reflect the natural colors and lines propelling so much of his motivation and vision.

Alterera’s work can be found in numerous galleries and collections, both public and private, including the USF Medical Institute and Gallery Lumière. Alterera was introduced at ArtExpo, New York 2000, and to this day his work is met with enthusiastic response.


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