Barber on the fringe of New York art success
The Times, London - July 2, 2019
For most of his life Michael Saviello has been known as Big Mike, the genial manager of a subterranean barber shop in the East Village who presides over a multinational cast of hairdressers and answers the phone 100 times a day.
Across town in Chelsea, the heart of New York’s art scene, he is hailed as an exciting new talent.
Mr Saviello is in the midst of his first show, a solo exhibition at a gallery. “I sold two pieces yesterday in the gallery for $5,000 each,” he said as he drove there with his wife, Harriett, for another day of hobnobbing with curators and critics. “I was totally shocked.”
How Big Mike, a Barbershop Painter, Broke Into the Art World
New York Times - June 28, 2019
From lunch-break sessions at the easel to Instagram fame to a solo show at a Chelsea gallery. In the words of one art dealer: ‘How dare he use such colors?’
‘It is never too late’: NJ man who spent decades painting on his lunch break now selling his paintings for thousands
PIX Channel 11 - New York, December 8, 2018
CHELSEA, Manhattan — Sometimes dreams really do come true and 57-year-old Mike Saviello from Bayonne knows it.
He's always dreamed of being a painter. but, somehow, life always seemed to get in the way.
“When you get married, you got to buy a house, pay bills,” Mike Saviello, the painter, told PIX11 News. “You’re not going to be paying your bills as an artist starting out."
Now, after more than 40 years of working as manager at Astor Place Hair Stylists and painting during his lunch break, Saviello is one of eleven artists in an exhibition at the prestigious E.S.P. Gallery in Chelsea where his paintings are being offered for $10,000 a piece and a giant chess board for $15,000.