They also learned about the Renaissance period, and the Romantic period. At home, they looked at paintings from the Renaissance. Aurie analyzed the Mona Liza smile, tried to perfect it on herself and me during the shoot (we took some pictures together, and before each snap Aurie would whisper to me: “Mona Liza”). Elliane asked Maria Teresa to put Mozart, but also loved the rest of the romantic music that Maria Teresa was playing for them in the background.
I like festivities. I love exciting occasions. So for me, this whole day was one long beautiful exciting celebration. The music, the cheery voices of Maria Teresa, the romantic studio with the special light, and the special huge fabric painted by Maria Teresa for the occasion, my gorgeous daughters look like they went back in time – it all was flavored with Maria Teresa’s Italian charm and came together to a really amazing wonderful experience. And at the end – we get pictures that are like NOTHING else! Just knowing an artist like Maria Teresa in itself is ‘genius’ for me; having her pictures hanging at home....well, I guess it is one genius experience for life.
For the last 15 years, Meloni has concentrated on portraits studies. worked exclusively on commission basis, producing portraits of adult and children. this focus continues to occupy Meloni internationally.
The following is a list of previous clients:
The Hon Isabella Grenfell of London, The Earl Rufus Albemarle of London, Monsieur Mathias Hermes of Paris, Il Conte Manfredi Della Gherardesca of Italy, Jacopo Frattini, Il Conte Giuseppe Balduino, Count Pedro Noronha De Campos De Carvalho of Potrugal, Dimitri Kosygin of Moscow, Princess Francesca Pignatelli Aragona Cortez, Elizabeth Ross Johnson, Mr Matthew Mellon, Mr Milbank, Pier Guerci the CEO of Loro Piana USA, Ms Diandra Douglas, Ramon Porteiro Tunas Senor de San Cristobal de Cerqueda and Zana Briski, Heath Ledger, Lady Cristiana Sorell, Mrs Daisy Soros, Mr Julian Allen
Maria Teresa's 1996 book, Rosie's Ballet Slipper, published in the United States by Harper Collins, enjoyed great critical acclaim. Her paintings, featuring nine children of diverse racial character, were heralded by the Fort Lauderdale Sun Sentinel for their power to "convey action and character to an astonishing degree." The Detroit Free Press book critic raved, "My 3 and 7 year old dancers were mesmerized by the pictures." The ability to animate her subjects, to capture their spirit and personality, is a hallmark of Meloni's work.
To this point, the Manchester, CT Journal Inquirer noted, "With utter perfection, Meloni captures young bodies in motion." In perhaps the greatest tribute to her work, the original oil paintings for Rosie's Ballet Slipper were displayed in conjunction with the Degas exhibition at the Art Institute of Chicago and at the Baltimore Museum of Art.
In 1993, Meloni published her first full-length picture book, Old Father Christmas, authored by the internationally acclaimed writer, Berlie Doherty. Meloni's paintings for Old Father Christmas were selected from the work of more than 1,200 book artists for special award and were featured at the Bologna International Children's Book Fair - the premier event for children's books. These paintings were then displayed throughout Japan, including at an exhibition in Tokyo's Itabashi Museum.
"After seeing pictures of some of Maria Theresa's prior works, I ... concluded that you had selected a superior artist, whose skill, patience and sensitivity will combine to produce a magnificent portrait. I was especially impressed by the infinite detail of her delicate brush strokes. You will set a new standard at the Club."
Michael Loening - VP of the Union Club.
Mr Milbank, I didn't have a chance to tell you what a masterpiece your portrait is. The artist did a great job, as if she captured a piece of your soul. Magnificent.
John Rellah, Executive Chef - The Union Club of New York
I want to thank you for a portrait that digs deep into my inner being. You have successfully stripped away the veneer that I have spent a lifetime creating around myself. As I have said numerous times the painting is more profound than the subject. And, that is your creation.
Your willing subject,
Mr Milbank - Milbank Roy & Co., LLC
Radio Televisione Italiana - ITALY
The Union Club of New York - 2009
"Watching Maria Teresa Meloni take photographs is like having the chance to step back in time and see a Rennaisance master like Michelangelo or Leonardo Davinci practice their craft. Her understanding of light and color to create such painting like photographs in the style of the Old Masters is a most remarkable experience. To have my family participate in such an artistic endeavor and have these magnificent portraits for a lifetime of enjoyment can only be described as extraordinary. Bravo Maria Teresa!"
Dr. Alex Greenberg - Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon
The Union Club of New York - 2009
Before entering Maria Teresa Meloni's studio in NYC, one must prepare oneself for enlightenment. The door opens into a small space of calm white light, welcoming and warm. Ms. Meloni greets her guests with Italian grace and beauty, gathering them gently into her studio, her inner sanctum of soulful genius. She explains her creative process, the ancient method of the masters, Leonardo and Michelangelo her mentors and suddenly, without warning, there they are. Her portraits revealed, one after the other more magnificent. The detail, the shadow and the light are cast layer upon layer and the eyes of her subjects open as windows to the soul. I have been moved beyond measure to witness such perfection; the creation of man, woman or child captured still, as if living. The tears that came softly to my eyes were a surprise. The experience was unforgettable.
Maria Teresa, I send you my love - Catherine Carolin
Radio Televisione Italiana - ITALY
What an experience! The girls will never forget this day! I think for them it was princess for a day-top model shoot put together. Because taking pictures with Maria Teresa goes beyond just the most amazing pictures we’ll ever have. Way before ‘picture day’, we met Maria Teresa for shopping. We had to find the right dress. I happened to have a fabric I thought could be good, and Maria Teresa approved of it. It’s not that obvious she’ll approve of anything. It took at least three rounds of searching all the fabrics at the ABC store to match the fabric I had. I could tell that she already ‘saw’ the pictures in her mind, we just had to ‘make’ the dress now. I asked if she knew a seamstress, but somehow after we found the right fabrics, Maria Teresa said she’ll do it, she’ll ‘make’ the dress. For my younger daughter, Elliane, 7 years old, Maria Teresa found a 3T size dress that was going to be attached to a long skirt made of the fabric I brought.
For my older girl, Aurie, 9 years old, we bought a piece of fabric, also to be attached to the long skirt. I had no idea how it would be possible to make a dress out of these pieces, but Maria Teresa assured me with her optimistic cheerful smile that it will be “genius”. Somehow at the end, we had TWO different dresses for both of them, made from the same three pieces. I could not believe both my daughters were actually wearing this size 3T dress......The way these ‘dresses’ came out WAS ‘genius’.
Maria Teresa uses the word ‘genius’ quite a lot – the dress is genius, the girls are genius (I am called ‘my lady’), the light is genius, the picture is genius. Personally, I just think Maria Teresa is genius, so it is natural everything around her is ‘genius’. There are hundreds compliments you could give Maria Teresa’s work in my opinion, but ‘genius’ just summarizes it pretty well I believe. As for the experience of photo shoot for the girls - the day with Maria Teresa at her studio I think was many dreams come true at the same time.
They got to be princesses – dressed up in a special dress (Elliane said that if we sew it ‘for real’ then she would like to wear it for a Bar-Mitzvah which is the most fancy she would go for usually); they got their hair done (with fresh flowers – also very specific kind, Maria Teresa style); and they got to be models.