MICHAEL DE FEO
Michael “Flowerguy” De Feo is known for his ubiquitous daisies, but this talented artist has more than one wheatpaste up his sleeve. Throughout the 1990s, De Feo decorated urban spaces with his cheerful design. He explains, “Most people know me for my flower project. Because the flower “re-sprouts” and gets repeated, it tends to stick in people’s minds.”
In stark contrast to his sunny flowers, De Feo’s newest pieces are complex and introspective. Divorcing his wife sparked a wave of self-examination that infiltrated his art. “Street art became more of a personal activity,” he says. “The self-portraits were a way of putting my insides out for display.” In the gallery or on the street, these portraits glimpse inside the psyche of a man exploring his hidden depths.
When he’s not pasting or painting, De Feo supports creative causes. On March 3, he spoke candidly about street art to an attentive New Orleans audience. He recalls, “Last year, I met Joy Glidden, the director of Louisiana ArtWorks, and she asked if I’d like to participate on the panel. I’ve always wanted to come to the Big Easy!”
In addition to his panel participation, De Feo also volunteered to raise funds for New York City’s Children’s Museum of the Arts. The charity auction included a chance for six children to paint a mural with De Feo. “I have a long history of working with organizations that I believe in and this one is really special,” he adds. “Kids and the rest of us need art!” De Feo enjoys visiting the museum with his biggest fan: his five year-old daughter, Marianna. While she stays home during the school year, De Feo looks forward to traveling with his daughter this summer.
Catch De Feo’s work in a gallery or a street near you. For more information, check out his website at www.mdefeo.com.
- Meghan Duffy
SELF PORTRAIT, 2008
16 x 20 inches
acrylic and antique map on canvas