Sneak Peeks: John Grillo

April 19, 2012

By Jared Ainscough

This past weekend I spent Greek Easter (different from regular Easter) with my wife’s grandmother. Yia Yia was celebrating her ninety-third Easter, and the more I speak with her, the more it amazes me that she has seen so much–and so much change. Imagine the world nearly 100 years ago and think about how much has changed since.

The year after Yia Yia was born, John Grillo was born. In the ninety-two years since then, Grillo has made a name for himself as one of the prominent abstract painters in New England. What is amazing about Grillo is that, though his career spans decades, his work and style have remained largely the same. The pillars of abstract expressionism–simplicity, color, surface, emotion–have only come into a sharper focus. Grillo’s work has the dignity and resolve of an older generation of painters. Instead of varying along with fads and trends, his voice has only become clearer over time.

Look for his story next month, in the 2012 issue of New England Home’s Cape and Islands.

John Grillo, 1955, watercolor and gouache on paper, 40 x 55″

John Grillo, 1955, woodcut on paper, 16 x 22″

John Grillo, 1956, oil on canvas, 84 x 22″