Award-winning fine artist Annette Alessi defines her job as “opening the heart of another.” Finding inspiration in the Brandywine Valley that has been her lifelong home as well as in places she visits, Annette’s pastels and paintings evoke a sense of wonder.
Her diverse body of work includes figure drawings, landscape paintings, pastels inspired by loved ones and animals, commissioned portraits and book illustrations. She has a particular knack for children’s portraiture. Her work conveys a timeless sense of warmth and humanity.
Trained as a fashion illustrator, Annette spent the first 10 years of her career in the advertising industry, where she worked as a fashion designer, a graphic designer, an art director, an illustrator and a portraiture artist. Annette began exhibiting starting in 2002 with figurative works in a series called “The History of Fashion.”
After taking a hiatus to start her family, she happened upon a group of artists painting in plein air and decided to teach herself how to paint landscapes with pastels. Her eye for beauty and design transitioned easily from gowns and jackets to country lanes, waterfalls and woodlands.
In 2006, Annette met Karl Kuerner, a protege of Andrew Wyeth, at the Darlington Art Center. Karl became a mentor, introducing Annette to oil painting, which eventually became her primary medium.
Annette continues to work in pastel as well as oil. Her work, including a large “Brandywine Valley Landscapes” collection, has exhibited locally and nationally and appeared in numerous published collections.
Annette loves to share her skill and passion with others and has taught adults and teens for many years. She has taught “Paint Along” classes for adults held at Chester County Art Association in West Chester, PA, figure drawing workshops for adults at Darlington Arts Center in Garnet Valley, PA and currently holds private lessons at her studio in Garnet Valley, PA.
She is a member of numerous organizations, including the Pastel Society of America and the Portrait Society of America. She is represented by Barbara Moore Fine Arts Gallery in Chadds Ford, PA, Strodes Mill Gallery in West Chester, PA and Soma NewArt Gallery in Cape May, NJ. She juried various art exhibits, including the Rose Tree Park Exhibition of the Artist Guild of Delaware County.
Annette’s work has been published in numerous books, including “100 Artists of the Brandywine Valley”, “Best of American Artists in Pastel “and “A World of Artists”. Her exhibits have received media coverage as well, including an article published in the July 11, 2013 News Journal of Wilmington in the Crossroads section, and the August 20, 2014 Garnet Valley Press.