Life has become a balancing act. For the past twelve months we’ve all had to take extraordinary precautions to stay healthy. It seems like every phase of home-life and work has been affected. Frustrating hurdles causing delays, cancellations, and an extra layer of stress are commonplace now.
All is not gloom and doom though in this second year of unprecedented obstacles, consider the upside. We’ve become Zoom experts, memes are now our main source of information, and we live in pajamas. Another bright spot is Creative Pinellas, which also happens to be filled with amazing people. I am very grateful for having received their professional artist grant for a second time. The artists being considered for the grant this year were tremendously talented and I felt honored to be included among them. As blogging is one of the requirements of the grant, I look forward to having a forum to document my projects.
Let me introduce myself, I’m Donald Gialanella. I have been an independent artist since 1995. Before that I taught art and design at Bilkent University in Turkey for two years, and prior to that I worked as a graphics producer at ABC Network television in New York City for ten years.
I’ve been afflicted with Parkinson’s since 2015, and struggle with a pronounced tremor on my right side. I’m not looking for pity or sympathy, just stating an unfortunate fact that pervades every facet of my daily life. When people see me struggle to create sculpture in spite of my disability, I hope it can be an inspiration to overcome obstacles in their lives.
Since 2007 my primary focus has been designing public sculpture. The last two years have been the busiest yet, during which I installed thirteen public pieces in Riverside, MO, Ft. Lauderdale, Boynton Beach, Pompano Beach, North Port, Orlando, Clearwater, Oldsmar, Tamarac, Jacksonville, and Fort Myers.
I couldn’t have done all of this without the generous help of friends, assistants, supporters, colleagues, and co-workers. My heartfelt thanks go out to Barbara St. Claire, Danny Olda, Christopher Hubbard, Terry Olson, Robert Kivort, Mobin Sasanpour, Matt Dolton, Hilda Ettedgui, Hope Crosson, Aleisha Prather, Glenn Weiss, Debby Coles-Dobay, Alex Kaufman, Kayley Papia, Laura Pucci, Mike Hofman, Grey Perna, and Dr. Mitchell Rothstein.