"... a kind of optical illusion of consciousness"

                                                  -Albert Einstein

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Joe Barbella

    I graduated from the University of the Arts with a BFA in Illustration and painting. Most of my work is representational with a concentration in portraitures and still lives. Portraits are an attempt to not only represent a person but to represent an emotion as well. One directional lighting is often used to sculpted the architecture of the model's face and body with what is traditionally called chiaroscuro. With a strong contrast between light and dark the body appears to dramatically step out of the darkness and into the light. My intention for the viewer is to focus completely on the subject matter or still life with no peripheral distractions. Thus I provide a clean, uncomplicated, stark and empty environment. Hopefully this alludes to a tranquil stillness within the painting and the viewer and some relief from the overwhelming stimulation of a seemingly complicated world in which we live.​

    Exhibits: 2008-2019 

Atria Gallery, Dual "Portraiture" Exhibition 

Da Vinci Art Alliance, "Perennial Visions"

Da Vinci Art Alliance, "Artist, Reader, Writer"

Perelman Center, "Celebration of Art and Life"

Philadelphia City Hall, "Summer of Love" 

International House, U.of Penn., "Motion Pictured" 

Barnes Foundation, "Let’s Connect"

William Way Center art gallery

PA Human Relations Art Initiative

Behind Closed Doors Gallery, Fabric Row

    As a musician I would fall into the adult alternative, or adult contemporary category. I started writing songs in high school with a guitar and found it far more entertaining than playing covers. Music has always been a venue for creativity and with the eventual help from DAWs (digital audio workstations) and music programs I found that writing and recording compositions, was not only possible with a guitar and vocals but with other musical instruments as well. I have self-published 5 CDs to date. I have spent some time playing out but presently I have been concentrating on recording and production.


    Music venues:  1998-2020 

"Chart-Topping Phila. Artists" playlist reverbnation.com 

For "I Will Listen"

"Trending Alternative Music" playlist reverbnation.com

For "Peace Bird"

WHYY Music Library 

World Cafe Live, Philly Song Shuffle

Philadelphia Museum of Art, Wednesday make it a night

Penns Landing Pride festivals  
Outfest Philadelphia

Pridefest, Philadelphia

Barnes and Noble bookstores, Rittenhouse Square

William Way Center

Dock Watson's

Last Drop, Antique Row 

Tin Angel, Old City