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Author Archives: Sal Maccarone, M.A.

Sal Maccarone is an American author, furniture maker, and sculptor. He is best known as a master craftsman, and for his internationally distributed woodworking books. Sal attended San Jose State University, and achieved a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree in Art History, and a Masters degree in Design and Applied Arts. In 2009 Sal began a syndicated newspaper column called, "How Art Shapes Our Lives". The column is published once each week in the California central valley, Sierra foothills, and the Yosemite area. Sal has also been in the business of building cabinetry, furniture and sculpture since 1972. His woodwork and sculpture can be viewed in many public, and private collections throughout the United States, and British Columbia. Locally, Sal designed and built the Tenaya Lodge Bar, complete with the four sculptures of historical people. He also built 80 pieces of furniture for the Chateau du Sureau, and many of the interpretive display cases for the Ahwahnee hotel.

How Art Shapes Our Lives: Style, John Muir, and Redwood

Image of the Merced County Courthouse statues.

By Sal Maccarone Throughout history major civilizations have impressed the future with their own distinctive style. The best parts of one popular style will often influence another in some fashion. It is the Architectural Revival that makes use of important elements from a previous era. Italianate, a Renaissance revival style, draws from a wide range of architectural models. Borrowed from ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: Glamour and Beauty

Image of Erté working on wardrobe for a movie.

By Sal Maccarone After the turn of the 20th century every field of art seemed to be in flux. During this time there were several artists whose work would serve to influence, and thereby change the direction that art would take. Romain de Tirtoff, (1892-1990), simply known to the world as Erté, was one of these multi-faceted individuals. Although he ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: Biltmore

Image of Biltmore Mansion.

By Sal Maccarone Born shortly after the Revolutionary war, Cornelius Vanderbilt would become the richest man in America. Known as, “The Commodore”, he was a hard working genius who built a shipping empire that began with a raft. His son “Billy” doubled the fortune! Those two stories are long ones, but it was their heirs that would make a lasting ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: Creativity

Image of the Mona Lisa.

By Sal Maccarone A good imagination, careful contemplation and personal interpretation are just a few of the ingredients that go to define artistic creativity. The ability to produce something from virtually nothing requires a myriad of skills. Sometimes what appears to be haphazard is really the result of very long consideration. Studies of highly creative individuals have shown that they ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: The Golden Gate Bridge

Image of the Golden Gate Bridge.

By Sal Maccarone The word utilitarian refers to something that is useful, or serves a function. Utilitarian art is something that has function as its main priority, but is at the same time aesthetically pleasing. Like many other artists, I like to think of my own work as utilitarian art. The fact is, many important architectural wonders can be considered ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: A Proficient American Sculptor

Image of the Shaw Memorial Relief Sculpture.

By Sal Maccarone A finished piece of sculpture can take many forms. The sculptural process is loosely defined as: The art of carving, modeling, or otherwise producing works of art which are three dimensional, such as would be a relief, an intaglio, or a sculpture-in-the-round. Breaking this definition down, a relief gives the impression that an image has been raised ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: The Art of Animation

Image of Walt Disney.

By Sal Maccarone Artists have been experimenting with animation for thousands of years. During the first century, China’s Imperial Dynasty developed a contraption that created the illusion of motion through a rapid succession of pictures. Later on, the Victorian era “Zoetrope”, a revolving cylinder viewed from the outside, was a big hit in the 1890’s. And, of course, there are ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: A Revolutionary Painter

Image of John Trumbull's painting of the Declaration of Independence.

By Sal Maccarone Before the camera made it so easy for us to document specific moments in time, the job was left up to the artistically inclined. The only visual record of what people looked like, or how events happened to unfolded are depictions made by artists. Before 1822 the world relied strictly on those skillful and insightful enough to ...

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How Art Shapes Our Lives: The Columbian Exposition

Image of the Columbian Exposition of 1893

By Sal Maccarone It is always entertaining to try and imagine what the world will be like a century from now. Even though it is impossible to fully comprehend what the future has to hold, we need only to look at the strides taken during the past one hundred years to get some clues. For instance, my grandparents were born ...

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