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Dr. Toni-Lee Sangastiano is a sideshow banner painter and multidisciplinary artist whose work examines the carnivalesque through painting, printmaking, books arts, typography and maker technology. Her interest in this theme began as a child on the boardwalks of the Jersey shore and was later fostered at Fairleigh Dickinson University (FDU) by Professor Marie Roberts and Artistic Director Dick Zigun of Coney Island's Sideshows by the Seashore in 1997, when she painted her first sideshow banners.
After living and teaching graphic design in Vermont for over fifteen years, Toni-Lee had a serendipitous “homecoming” in 2019 when she painted the “Freak Show Alley” mural for the Coney Island Brewery. She continues to document and contribute to sideshow history through painted banners for performers and fans alike, classical oil paintings of show people and carnivalesque landscapes, and her doctoral dissertation, “Dialogic Dissensus: The Postmodern Sideshow” through the Institute for Doctoral Studies in the Visual Arts.
Sangastiano’s exhibitions include the Yale School of Art, the Robert Hull Fleming Museum, the Shelburne Museum and Tate Modern, London. Her work was recently acquired by the Italian American Museum of Washington DC (IAMDC).
She currently lives in Virginia, is an Assistant Professor of the Practice in Studio Art and Digital Media Specialist at Georgetown University and is an Adjunct Professor at her alma mater, FDU.
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The Not-for-Profit Arts Center at Brooklyn's Beach.
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