Jerry Carniglia

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Present Tension
On the Road to Life's Last Act Oil On Paper 45 X 31 Inches Framed
Permanent Heaven Oil On Canvas 81 X 63 Inches
S - 16 Oil On Paper 45 X 31 Inches Framed
S - 30 Oil On Paper 45 X 31 Inches Framed
Gods...We Picture Them, 2006 Oil On Canvas 88"X 78" © Jerry Carniglia
Love Me the Way That I Am, 2008 Oil On Paper 40" X 26" © Jerry Carniglia
Beginning to Trust Her Love, 2008 Oil On Paper 40" X 26" © Jerry Carniglia
My Brother Forever, 2008 Oil On Canvas 78" X 67" © Jerry Carniglia
SAE-532, 2008 Monoprint On Fabriano 30" X 23" © Jerry Carniglia
Aphanasis, 2011 Oil On Canvas 78 X 68 Inches
Soul Blind, 2011 Oil On Canvas 63 X 81 Inches
Bird Who Knows
Don't Feel Lonely When You Find Yourself Changes
Forever My Brother
Forced Choice 1
Heart Unoccupied III
Inheritance From The Road
Keys To Heaven
Life on the Trail
Thief to Judge
Twist of Fate
Ungraspable Body
Can't Argue With That
A Hundred Sensations Per Second
Dancing Qualia
Hence the Then Stills and Buts
In or Out
I'd like to Help Ya, but...
Nasty Brutish and Short
Invisible Men
Potted Plant Downtown
Pure Reasoned Past
Self Portrait
State Property
Temporary Gravity
Victim of History
Madrigal #8, 1995 Oil On Canvas 52.5 X 52.5" © Courtesy of the Artist and Chandra Cerrito Contemporary, Oakland
Quick Facts
Jerry Lee Carniglia October, 29, 1946 - June 7, 2015
Jerry Lee Carniglia was born October, 29, 1946 -- maybe! Like much of Jerry's life, there was intrigue, spontaneity, wit and fun attached to that date -- it could have been the 28th, given both appear in his records.
Born and raised in San Francisco to Stefan and Dee Vogel Carniglia, and along with brother Charles (Chuck), Jerry attended school in San Francisco -- occasionally; more frequently he was drag racing underage along Ocean Highway. Not surprisingly, Jerry did not finish high school. In 1965 he joined the US Navy as a humble deck swabber on the USS Strong. His innate intelligence was quickly spotted and Jer was reassigned to train as a radar operator, first domestically and then in 1967 on sorties up the Mekong Delta. 
Leaving the Navy in 1968, Jerry attended College of Marin while continuing his informal apprenticeship learning his father's cabinetmaking pastime; on week-ends, Jerry helped build a new family home in Fairfax where he later resided; his love for the trails of Mt. Tam never ebbed. Jerry discovered his great creative capacity for making artisan furniture as well as learning the building trade that eventually led to a General Contractor license.
Jerry traveled worldwide, at one point spending almost two years travelling from Tunisia to Cape Town, followed by a trip across the US in an unreliable VW bus. Returning to complete a bachelor's degree in English at UC Berkeley in 1975, Jerry was quickly encouraged to transfer his boisterous enthusiasm to Drama. There, he made precious friendships lasting to the end of his life. He supported himself and many fellow students as a contractor and cabinetmaker. Jerry's generosity of both spirit and resources was renowned; it was ever present and remained throughout his sadly shortened life.
Jerry became a founding member of Berkeley Lights Theater Ensemble, appeared with San Francisco Eureka Theater Company and designed sets for MaFishCo . In 1980 he moved to Emeryville and became part of its embryonic artist colony. Jerry was to make Emeryville home for the rest of his life. He was a luminary of the community, helping his fellow artists and participating in the lively political debates that guided the direction of the changing city. Walking with him through Emeryville, you may have thought he carried the unofficial mayoral scepter. 
Jerry explored his skills as an artisan furniture-maker and marveled at his own transition into furniture as art. His work was so fine it led to recognition by Cooper-Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum on the East Coast and The Oakland Museum of California on the West. Eventually Jerry found that cabinetry alone constrained his creative forces. He made several pilgrimages to view the Old Masters in Europe and turned exclusively to painting in 1989. He won admission to the UC Berkeley Fine Arts Department, where he received the James Phelan Award and the Eisner prize, graduating with an MFA in 1993.
Jerry Carniglia's paintings exploded on the art community. Over the next 22 years, he created five series of works. Between furniture and painting, Jerry had nine solo exhibitions, at least nineteen collaborative shows, won seven grants and prizes, and had his work selected for the permanent collections at the San Francisco de Young Fine Arts Museum and Berkeley Art Museum.
In early 2011, Jerry was diagnosed with metastasized prostate cancer, an insidious disease that had already claimed his father and brother. He stretched every ounce of fun, joy, travel, painting and spiritual growth out of his remaining time. Under the care of his admired doctor, Larry Fong at UCSF --where he once showed up on Halloween in his Superman suit -- Jerry benefitted from many experimental treatment protocols; inevitably prostate cancer took his life on Sunday, June 7, 2015. Jerry gave much back to the prostate cancer community, counseling and advocating for others. He regularly attended UsTOO support groups in Walnut Creek and Marin where he was honored in 2013.
Jerry welcomed the Almighty presence in his writings and followed many spiritual paths. Though raised in a Christian Science family, Jerry embraced Buddhist practices, celebrated Shamanic rituals, and filled his home with icons of all religions.
Jerry Carniglia never married or had offspring - although he would have been an awesome dad. He is survived by his nieces, Annika and Mary, cousins, and many dear friends, all of whom respected his verve, creativity, affection and considerable contribution to the arts. His presence, not to mention outrageous socks and colorful spectacles, will be sorely missed.
For more information on Jerry Carniglia's artwork, please visit .
A memorial celebration is planned for early August.

Published in San Francisco Chronicle on June 28, 2015- See more at: