Robert Cenedella's painting is a representation of the chaos in The United States Senate during the Obama Administration's first term. After the 2008 Great Recession, Democrats lost the midterm election in 2010, and the Senate flipped to a Republican majority. Under the leadership of Sen. Mitch McConnell (R, KY), the Tea Party was born and the divide in Congress became more prevalent. Congress was so divided at this time, that you'll note President Barack Obama walking a tightrope in the the middle of the painting to pass his administration's legislative agenda.
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As a New Yorker, Cenedella has seen it all (and then painted it). From subway paintings, street scenes, famous landmarks, and Broadway shows, Bob managed to freeze moments in time and preserve them for our viewing pleasure.
Commissioned by the infamous restauranteur, Sirio Maccioni (1932-2020), Cenedella's Oil on Canvas depicts the elegance and spirit of one of the world’s most preeminent restaurants in its original setting. It is a visual feast, a family portrait including more than 100 celebrities and political habitués over the years such as Henry Kissinger, Richard Nixon, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Philip Roth, Paul Newman, Tony Randall, Sophia Loren, and Barbara Walters.
“Yes Art!” was Cenedella’s farewell to art when he decided to join an advertising agency to escape the commercialism of the art world. Predicting that this gimmick-filled show would draw more attention than any other show that year, “Yes Art!” was exhibited in 1965 at the Fitzgerald Gallery. “Yes Art!” was subsequently taken seriously and imitated by many artists, yet without the humor and commentary present in Cenedella’s work.