Fran Di Giacomo
Artist, Author & Speaker
Fran Di Giacomo (pronounced de-JOCK-o-mo) is an award-winning artist represented by galleries and art publishers. She has been published in books, magazines, and newspapers, including Who’s Who of American Women, Who’s Who in American Art, and The Best of Portrait Painting. Her renowned portraiture includes such notables as former Chief Justice of the Supreme Court Warren Burger, former President George W. Bush, and sports figures Emmitt Smith and Mavericks’ Dirk Nowitzki.
Pursuing her art career, the Dallas artist was most excited by classical realism and the Dutch masters. She sought living masters to study with, including Paul Leveille, David Leffel, and a unique opportunity with Howard Terpning.
Her still life paintings are in great demand for their lush colors and dramatic lighting. To test a painting for the drama she seeks, Di Giacomo literally turns out the light. Perfecting the mystery of light and shadow has been a constant goal. “The light in a client’s home is constantly changing, so my paintings take on a different personality with every situation. In today’s fast-paced world, our senses are constantly assaulted by the noisy, the vulgar, the grotesque. I want to create beautiful paintings that fill a room with grace and dignity.”
As a “career member of the chemo club”, Fran was diagnosed with breast cancer in 1984 and ovarian cancer in 1998. Through double-digit surgeries and nearly continuous chemo, she earned signature status in Oil Painters of America, produced numerous exhibits, and painted prestigious portraits. She built a national reputation while keeping her cancer secret. She continued to take on commissioned paintings with deadlines and to make other commitments that would require her to work regardless of pain, fatigue or hospital stays. “I was afraid that if I walked into a gallery with a new painting, they’d be looking at my new wig instead. I was living my fairy tale and I wanted to keep the focus on the artwork.”
Plans for a book of her paintings took a detour and became a book designed to help cancer patients find their own fairy-tale. Frequent requests for advice led her to write I’d Rather Do Chemo Than Clean Out the Garage: Choosing Laughter Over Tears. Fran is outrageously witty, slightly wicked, and packed with inspiration and trench-warfare wisdom. She gives serious tools for handling a personal crisis, and a powerful message about life and laughter.
“Art is my passion, my sanity, my nirvana. When I sit down at the easel, all the pain and questions in my life wash away as my mind is consumed with the painting in front of me. I live in two separate worlds. It’s my paradox to balance a devastating disease with elegant, serene paintings.” said Di Giacomo.
Read more of Fran story at www.TheChemoLady.com
Fran is represented by Southwest Gallery in Dallas, Gallerie Amsterdam in Carmel & Royal Street Fine Art in Aspen. Visit: