Maria was raised in southern Italy and Westerly, RI. She attended Rhode Island College and also apprenticed herself to a marble-carving studio in the historic town of Pietrasanta in northern Italy. Even as she was learning to carve marble, she began a serious (and more modern) pursuit of making photographs. When she returned to this country to pursue her M.F.A. at the School of Visual Arts in New York, she found a fertile subject in her immediate family who carry on their old-world traditions in small-town America. Her recent work features a cast of characters in their personal environments. The photographs are planned as if they were three-dimensional maquettes, following Renaissance perspective exercises. The images are a shadowbox world, her own created landscape, almost a small museum of humanity and an asylum for dreams and desires.
She has received numerous awards including a post-graduate Anthony Cerino Fellowship at the School of Visual Arts and a 2013 Fellowship Award in Photography from the Rhode Island State Council on the Arts. Her residences have taken her to Székesfehérvár, Hungary, Lazarea (Gyergyószárhegy) Romania and Pietrasanta, Italy.
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