"If you ask me what I came to do in this world, I, an artist, will answer you: I am here to live out loud."
Kathryn Donatelli is a portrait artist, still life painter, mural painter and book illustrator. In 1986 Ms. Donatelli relocated to Los Angeles from New Jersey. At the time she was working as a creative director for retail publications but never lost sight of her desire to be a fine artist. In just a few short years of moving to Los Angeles Kathryn left the publishing business and set up her own portrait and mural company.
She has been commissioned to paint hundreds of portraits including such notable clientele as Jo Marie Payton of the TV Series "Family Matters"; Dick O’Neill, noted actor of the TV series "Cagney and Lacy"; along with Glynn Turman, actor; Joseph Caligiuri, inventor or the gyroscope and retiring CEO of The Litton Corporation; William Bailey, retiring Chief of the Sheriff’s Department and David and Elaine Marmel who produce the Mrs. America Pageant. Benefits that Kathryn was invited to donate custom portraits to include: The Thurgood Marshall Scholarship Fund; City of Hope; American Heart Association; California African-American Museum of Art; and Stop Cancer, the annual Tom Bosley Celebrity Golf and Tennis Championship. Since 2002 she has contributed her original paintings, hand painted ceiling murals, wall murals and borders to 8 different Design and Showcase Houses in Pasadena and Hancock Park. She designed, painted and installed over a dozen Private, Corporate and Public murals and has illustrated 3 children's books. Her work has been exhibited in over 18 juried shows from New York City to Los Angeles including two national juried shows. Kathryn is member of The California Art Club and The California Art League. She is proficient in several mediums including oil, pastel, watercolor, charcoal, and acrylic.
One of the mural projects Kathryn has taken part in as designer, instructor and lead artist is The Metropolitan Water District's "The Story of Water" which was displayed around the outside of the current location for two years while that building was being constructed. Ms. Donatelli worked with 25 senior art students from the Woodrow Wilson High School. The mural was 285 feet long and took 5 months to complete and was featured on national TV and published in the Los Angeles TImes. The mural is now in storage waiting to be installed permanently at a visitor center in the Owen’s Valley.
The second mural project was a special project of the Los Angeles Sheriff’s Department in the Lynwood County Jail. The site of the mural is inside of one of the modules that housed Veterans of the United States Armed Forces. A one thousand square foot mural depicting scenes such as the raising of the flag at Iwo Jima, the Vietnam Memorial, Desert Storm, and fireman raising the flag at the site of the World Trade Center, among others, was designed by Kathryn and painted under her direction by 13 inmates. Kathryn received a certificate in a special event from the Sheriff’s Department recognizing her attention to detail and inspiring and uplifting incarcerated Veterans.
Currently Ms. Donatelli is part of a company that is painting a mural in The Misfit Organic Restaurant in Santa Monica, CA. She says: "I’m part of the design team and I’m painting the figures and the other artist is painting the landscapes. This collaborative project is very close to my heart because I love working alongside other artists. The subject of the mural is inspired by the American Impressionist Illustrators of the 1930’s including Howard Chandler Christy that painted the murals in the Cafe de Artistes in New York City. The images are of young innocent women frolicking in the woods and secluded streams and ponds. Lots of fun, excitement and major challenges of painting nearly 1000 square feet eighteen feet up in the air plus 9 feet high to the ceiling. Being up on the scaffolding and using a scissor lift to hoist me up there has provided many humorous moments and lively conversation."
Certificate of Industrial Art, DuCret School of Art, Plainfield, NJ
Los Angeles City College, Illustration and Watercolor 1, 2 and 3,
Workshop, The 7 Color Contrasts of Johannes Itten, Beverly Cassell.
Workshop, Nicolaides The Science of Drawing, Beverly Cassell.
Workshop, Master Portrait Painting, David Leffel.
Workshop, Still Life Painting, Stacy Kamin.
The California Art Club, Associate Artist
The California Art League, Exhibiting Member
L.A. Art Association, 1989-1993
LACMA Sales and Rental Gallery, 1994-1999
2015 Best in Show, California Art League, “My Favorite Subject”
2016 First Place, California Art League, “Art in a Free Society” juried by Jim Morphesis, sponsored by the ACLU.
2015 First Place, California Art League, “Fire and Ice”
2016 Judges Award, San Fernando Valley Arts and Cultural Center, “Creative Aging” juried by Margaret Danielak
2016 National Show, The Tag Gallery, Santa Monica, juried by Kent Twitchell
1984 National Show, The One Gallery, juried by Jack Beal