By Angela Lingg
With up-paced music blaring and paint flying, David Garibaldi created four paintings within the space of on an hour at the Dillon Lecture Series at the Sports Arena on April 4.
Garibaldi is a performance artist and the second presenter in the Dillon Lecture Series for 2016. Throughout his performance he paused and spoke to the audience about his journey as an artist.
His painting career began as a rebellious teenage graffiti artist. One night while fleeing from the cops, he realized that he was wasting his potential and hanging with the wrong crowd.
“What are you doing with these friends putting you in these situations where you are running from the police?” Garibaldi said. “What are you doing with this gift of creativity given to you? This opportunity you didn’t ask for it; you didn’t buy it; you stole some things, but you didn’t steal this. What are you doing with this gift and opportunity of creativity?”
Garibaldi created four paintings during his April 4 lecture.
The first was a portrait of Elvis, but the painting wasn’t recognizable until he turned it upside down, revealing the face of the rock and roll king.
The Elvis painting was a favorite of aspiring artist McCartney Ridge, Hutchinson.
“It’s crazy because I was singing some Elvis on the way here and so it’s a big coincidence,” McCartney said.
Garibaldi’s second painting earned applause as the HCC Blue Dragon took shape on Garibaldi’s black canvas.
Garibaldi encouraged his audience to take the steps they needed to fulfill their passion, whether that was to attend college or change their job.
“Inside each and every one of us in this room, whoever you are, wherever you’re from, each of us has a passion,” Garibaldi said.
His third image was of President John F. Kennedy.
The paintings were chosen from a list of portraits that Garibaldi can paint at any given moment. His portraits are meant to inspire his audience to be like that person.
“I asked myself, ‘If I was to paint my portrait today, how would people feel about it?’” he said.
Garibaldi’s paintings are often auctioned to raise money for charities — that is the purpose behind his painting.
His final painting was also a mystery until he flipped it to reveal the face of Albert Einstein.
Garibaldi said Einstein is one of his most requested paintings.
That painting was the favorite of HCC student Adi Flora Van Wye, Hutchinson.
“He started off with a handprint and it just bloomed from there and I thought that was incredible,” Wye said.
Originally, Garibaldi was going to only leave one or two paintings at HCC.
However, Laurie Sawyer, administrative assistant to the president, said that during the luncheon, Garibaldi was so humbled that his picture would be added to the wall of lecturers in Stringer Fine Arts, that he gave all four paintings to HCC.
Sawyer said the school is planning on hanging the Elvis portrait in Stringer Fine Arts, the Blue Dragon in the Sports Arena, John F. Kennedy in the JFK library, and Einstein in the Science hall.