Vito Bonanno lives and works in New Haven, CT. Due to a lack of accessible art education programs for college age adults with autism, Bonanno began private art classes at Creative Arts Workspace in New Haven in 2006 and has continued his formal training via private instruction from a variety of formally trained artists. In 2009, Bonanno won an Award of Excellence in a juried competition for young people with disabilities, produced by VSA Arts and sponsored by Volkswagen. He was named one of 15 emerging young artists with disabilities and was honored during the artist reception in Washington, DC.
Bonanno began his artist representation with veteran NYC Art Dealer and co-owner of New York City based Umbrella Arts Gallery, Margaret Bodell. Bodell helped define and expand the outsider movement during the 90’s in her East Village gallery by including artists with autism alongside contemporary artists, bringing to light the unique visual arts gift that only the autistic can tap into such as Michael Madore, Jessica Park and Ricky Hagedorn. Bodell encouraged Bonanno to collaborate with “mainstream” artist’s one-on-one-in order to help him round out his artistic voice and philosophy, as well as to encourage him to continue to explore additional artistic mediums. These collaborations have resulted in a discovery of the wide range of artistic styles that Bonanno is capable of and have furthered his independent and unedited artistic voice. Bodell believes Bonanno has a rare form of extreme talent. Vito continues to work with various artist facilitators in his studio in New Haven, CT expanding his knowledge of materials and techniques and further developing his creative vision. His unique view of the world provides a seemingly endless well of inspiration that fills his head with images and concepts until they spill over onto the canvas bursting on the scene in vibrant colors and hard to ignore imagery that can harbor obvious, but often secret messages. Vito was chosen to participate in the prestigious global art competition Art Olympia in Tokyo, Japan 2015. Skatepark Krusty from Obsessions & Meditations was a First Round Winner.