Behind the Face

An exhibit that explores the modern fascination with selfies and the timeless issue of self-image.



Behind the Face is a series of self-portraits that explore everyday expressions that individually capture a fleeting moment and mood. With palette knife and acrylic paint, a cell phone camera and a wee bit of sass, Adele Castillo has set out to remind us that we are who we are and, like it or not, our faces reflect that truth.  


Intended to counteract the modern habit of capturing only happy or posed faces, Adele Castillo has shown no fear in displaying her age and her moods in this very real depiction of who she is at any given moment. Ranging from pensive to silly, sordid to joyful, this series is guaranteed to elicit reactions of all kinds from all generations.  


"Social media has had a profound effect on how we choose to present ourselves. It takes time to embrace how we appear to others. I look in the mirror now and see my mother much more often than I see me. Inside I am still 20 years old, but my face, and my body, tell me otherwise. Sometimes I am beautiful, often I am not. I do not smile all the time. Sometimes a pensive look may come across as grumpy or judgmental, mean or angry. I believe everyone can see themselves in these paintings and realize that these are only a reflection of who we are behind the face."  


Opening Reception & Artist Talk

Saturday November 12th from 4-6pm


Adele Castillo

 Growing up in the 1960’s during the pop art era exposed Adele Castillo to the endless possibility of color. Even though her beloved piano teacher insisted that red and green could not possibly be colored on the same page in a coloring book.As a child she had a fondness for intense purple and had a propensity to mix multiple patterns in her clothing choices. Thank goodness for a mother who either supported her “style” or looked the other way. Even her college color class professor had an aversion to her project interpretations, but she still managed to graduate with an art education degree, cum laude. 

After 19 years in the classroom, Adele left her teaching job and since then has been following her own creative path. This has included teaching adult art and after school classes, exhibiting in numerous outdoor art festivals and several galleries, plus finding a niche interpreting animal portraits in unusual acrylic color combinations. 
Adele currently maintains a studio, and gallery wall, in Crossroads Art Center, Richmond, VA. and in the last few years has been honored to jury and judge all-media shows in Richmond and at the Ocean View Art Festival in Norfolk. She has also been known to share her expertise via demonstrations, critiques and art talks for various art groups and communities.  
Although Adele's commission work has been in high demand, in recent years she has redirected her focus toward work of a more personal nature, exploring various acrylic media and returning to portraiture. Always willing to share what she learns, Adele teaches painting classes and workshops in her studio at Crossroads Art Center, at the Bay School in Mathews, Va, at the Dare County Arts Council in Manteo and other locations upon request.