Barbara B. Petitto --- "is a painter whose richly textured paintings (brush and palette knife), is almost sculptural, a gifted colorist whose palettes are bold, but always in harmony. Her portraits are swirling, painterly dramas reminiscent of Van Gogh.
Wherever she casts her passionate eye, new colors emerge and become believable. The artist has moved away from a naturalistic palette in her portraits, but convinces the viewer to make a leap of imagination and feel her people deeply in thought beneath their colorful surfaces."
Elizabeth Wilford Assistant Curator Metropolitan Museum of Art
Barbara B. Petitto -- "a present day painter working in the German Expressionist manner . . . assertive, free spirited, while candidly observing humanity and the human condition.
The bold, garish compositions of Emile Nolde and the descriptively distorted figures in Egon Schiele's characterizations immediately come into mind; however, petitto's portraiture conveys less socially evil emotions and is less expressive of anguish and anger. Her concern seems more with turmoil, helpless confusion, resignation.
Barbara Petitto's compositions are executed in accord with academic principles though at first glance this does not seem to be so. To better serve her purposes, she alters them successfully for "rules are made to be broken". Limited depth, a full palette of primary colors, counter tensions and tonal contrasts identify her enthusiastically rendered paintings. Her brush appears to have been in change as it raced freely over, around, and into their frontal planes waging war with realism. she becomes totally involved, - emotionally, mentally, physically and spiritually. Her portraits usually fill the picture areas, sometimes escaping bounding edges . . . no matter.
Petitto paints with spontaneous abandon but this does not mean she works without discipline. Scale and perspective are considered but not at the expense of dynamic expression. Her honed talent allows intuition to direct the work. Her creativity is free and unleashed, unhampered by retarding and restrictive intellectual concern for "right" . . . she paints for paintings sake; for the pure cathartic joy of it.
Petitto's art leaves an imprint on the memory of those who see it regardless of their reaction; be it
favorable, shocked, confused, or put-off. Art is meant to have impact, sometimes clout. Barbara B.
Petitto has it!"
D. R. Meyers NY Art Critic
Barbara Petitto is currently listed in Who's Who in American Art.