Featured Artist for the month of September: ada m. passaro

Posted August 28, 2020

Featured work: “Over the Wall”, Soft Dry Pastel , 29″ x 35″, $1900.

Congratulations to ada m. passaro for being selected for the month!

As a small child,  ada passaro’s parents often took her to art museums. Born in Chicago, her family moved to Los Angeles in the early 1930s. At 13, her parents enrolled her in a figure drawing class at the Chouinard Art Institute. This training in realistic art would be instrumental in what would become a longtime career in design and illustration. Passaro graduated in 1945 from UCLA with a

bachelor’s degree in art. Before finishing her education there, she had found her first job in the field with Spielman, Taylor and Turner, an advertising agency.>
“I learned how to produce a product from concept to finish,” she said. “This came in handy when I freelanced for many years.”

By 22, Passaro had her first position as an art director. She would also be chief layout artist for fashion advertising at The Broadway department store’s headquarters in Los Angeles. While freelancing, her clients included the Los Angeles Times and UC Riverside, as well as the Snow Goose and Queen’s Cabinet, businesses in Riverside, where she moved in 1959.

While continuing her freelance work, Passaro and longtime partner Ron Pidot ran Second Nature, a downtown Riverside gift shop she describes as “eclectic.” After deciding to close the shop and wanting to shift from design into more fine art, Passaro enrolled in a figure drawing and painting class at Riverside City College at 74.

“There I picked up a stick of pastel,” she says. “Being able to draw and paint at the very same time was amazing to me. The sensation of touching the surface with pastels blew my mind. All those lush colors, hundreds of them. I was hooked. From then on, soft pastels became my medium of choice.”

Passaro says that she tries to capture the essence of a scene, the personality of a person or the vibrancy of the colors that she sees. She enjoys painting outdoors on location with the Plein Air Artists of Riverside.

Excerpt from Artist Spotlight: Riverside woman, 93, still lives and breathes art. Read full article here: https://www.pe.com/2018/05/24/artist-spotlight-riverside-woman-93-still-lives-and-breathes-art/

“View from Beverly’s Garden”

“Red Barn”

“The Harvest”