James Marino, City Hall, 2010, 24 x 18 inches, watercolor and marker on paper

            James Marino, City Hall, 2010, 24 x 18 inches, watercolor and marker on paper

James Marino of Arts Work at Autism Services Inc.

Friday, November 22, 2013

James Marino began his Buffalo Architectural Landmark watercolor series in 2010 while enrolled in the Arts Work Program at Autism Services, Inc. Participants of the program are encouraged to explore their own creative interests through art-making methods. James is an artist drawn to complex architectural structures. His subjects are hand-picked from a folder containing images of well-known local landmarks. His process combines permanent marker and watercolor on paper or canvas. James uses detailed observation, line, and skilled color-mixing.

When presented with choices of subjects to paint, Marino repeatedly and consistently chooses architecturally complex, iconic Buffalo buildings and locations. As part of this project Marino began painting on-site in the community.  His subjects include The Buffalo History Museum, City Hall, the New York Central Terminal, the Richardson-Olmstead Complex, and the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens. Any details of his selection criteria are unknown; any clues are contained only within the work itself.

Details about James’ selection criteria remain a mystery.  Possible influences may be his mother’s background in art, an uncle who is a structural engineer, or his grandfather a draftsman who did steel design. According to his family, when James was young, art became a way for him to organize his world with shapes, colors, numbers, and lines. He began to draw images of repeating shapes, numbers, words, colors and picture symbols.

James’ art has been exhibited in galleries throughout Western New York including Gallery 51, B West Studios, Langston Hughes Institute, WNED’s Horizons Gallery, Asbury Hall at The Church, Albright-Knox Education Gallery, Burchfield Penney Community Gallery, ArtSpace Buffalo Gallery, and the Buffalo & Erie County Botanical Gardens Archangel Gallery. His first solo exhibition, James Marino: Bflo Watercolors, was display in the Community Gallery at The Buffalo History Museum in the summer of 2010.

—Tara L. Lyons


Tara L. Lyons is the Program Manager and Museum Educator at The Buffalo History Museum where she creates community programming and curates temporary exhibitions. She received her B.A. in Art History and Museum Studies from Buffalo State College. She is expected to receive her Masters in Museum Operations from Buffalo State College in the fall of 2014. Tara’s past museum experience includes The Adirondack Museum in Blue Mountain Lake, New York; The Peggy Guggenheim Collection in Venice, Italy; and The Albright-Knox Art Gallery in Buffalo, New York. She has presented her research on various conference panels including the American Alliance of Museums Annual Meeting (2012), Musuemwise conference (2010, 2011, 2012) and facilitated a museum education workshop at the Conference on New York State History (2012).