Paintings of artist Salvatore
Tornello SPSA November exhibit

November 10, 1999
Santa Paula News
The Santa Paula Society of the Arts is presenting a unique display during November: the SPSA Featured Artist of the Month is the late Salvatore Tornello, father of noted artist Dorine Lunceford. Tornello's paintings will be exhibited on the Douglas Shively Wall at Blanchard Community Library through Nov. 27.Lunceford, a longtime SPSA member, will be hanging 20 paintings by her father, a self-taught - and acclaimed - artist who specialized in seascapes and landscapes in oil.A native of Sicily born in 1885, Tornello arrived in the United States at 16. "His first efforts at painting were done in watercolor, but his reason for changing to oils in about 1920 is lost to time," said Lunceford.In New York Tornello became a photographer, a skill he passed on to his younger brother, who later became a photographer for Life magazine. Salvatore concentrated on commercial photography and used his trade in the Army during World War I. Stationed in the Orient, Philippines and Siberia. Tornello photographed "Life as he saw it," noted Lunceford, processed the photos on postcards and sold them to soldiers who used them to send home. Tornello then started to create photo albums for the servicemen to buy as souvenirs.After the war Tornello moved to Highland Park, California and went to work for the U.S. Post Office. When he started painting again he used some of his photographs for subject matter; his first oil was completed in 1927, a gift for his sister.He married in 1929 and started a family, and continued to paint, striving to learn more about art on his own.Tornello's works include many scenes of California in the 1920s through the 1950s; he was noted for his intricate cloud formations reflected in water.
The self-taught artist won many awards, including numerous President's trophies at the Greek Theater, many Merit Awards, Most Popular Painting Awards and First Place Awards.Tornello, who passed away in 1971, belonged to the Pasadena Society of the Arts, Artists of the Southwest, Painter's & Sculptor's Club, Valley Artists' Guild and the Highland Art Guild.Blanchard Community Library is located at 119 N. 8th St.; hours are 10 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Thursday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturdays.For more information about the SPSA call 525-1104.



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