Patrick Schiavino 2008
Manasquan Bank Commercial 2017
Industry Magazine Article
Red Bank Green Article 2015
Asbury Park Zest Article 2014
New York Times Article 1997
Patrick and Brittany James at Art629 Gallery "Metamorphosis" exhibition 2017
"Jersey Arts Power Couples" article in Asbury Park Press 2017
PATRICK AND STING at John McEnroe Gallery Opening 1997
PATRICK AND SECRETARY OF STATE LONNA HOOKS the State of NJ Arts Awards Ceremony 1996
PATRICK AND GOVERNOR CHRISTINE WHITMAN at the State of NJ Arts Awards Ceremony 1996
ABOUT PATRICK SCHIAVINO
Patrick Schiavino is a self-taught painter and mixed media artist. He currently lives and works on Cookman Avenue, in Downtown Asbury Park, New Jersey with life partner and fellow artist Brittany James. A native of New Jersey, he is a graduate of Montclair State College, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in Industrial Arts and Design.
After his graduation from college in 1977, Patrick spent two years working for interior designer Irene Kulak, who was designing residential loft conversions in Soho, NYC. It was there that Patrick developed his interest in fine art and began to experiment with his own work.
“It was a magical time back then in Soho and downtown”, Schiavino says. “There was art and music everywhere. It was the epicenter of what was cutting edge in the creative world, and I feel so very fortunate to have been exposed and involved in it all. It was commonplace to run into people daily who you read about in the news, saw on TV, or heard on the radio. There were galleries and music venues everywhere, and art openings to go to all the time. It was just surreal, but thinking back, we were just a bunch of kids having fun. I never really understood what the true impact and importance of it all was later going to be. It was a classic case of not being able to see the forest for the trees.”
In 1979, at the age of 25, Patrick was commissioned to design and build a very popular jazz club in Montclair called Katie Gray’s. He stayed on as a partner after the completion of the project as the house booking agent for talent and promoted the venue. It was there that he discovered and began to learn the music business, and in the following year he broke out on his own and started his own music booking agency. He then went on to become a talent buyer for the famous Club Bene’ in Sayreville, NJ, arguably the most successful original music venue in New Jersey of its time. Patrick was responsible for bringing in some of the biggest names in the entertainment business to the small and intimate venue. Some of his biggest accomplishments included bringing the likes of Howard Stern, Don Imus, and Regis Philbin into the club to make their debut live performances. On average, Club Bene’ did approximately 100 to 120 shows a year for the 20 years that Patrick was involved with the venue.
He also had a longtime relationship with New Jersey native and cult hero Uncle Floyd (Floyd Vivino), of the “Uncle Floyd Show” as unofficial manager and booking agent through the heyday of that television show. “My experiences with Uncle Floyd are another great memory for me” says Schiavino. “I hadn’t heard about him until one day I was in the Village (Greenwich Village) going to see a show, and there was a great music venue downtown called “The Bottom Line” on West 4 th Street. It was one of my favorite places to see a show back then. It was set up a lot like Club Bene. Anyway, I’m walking down the street and there is a line around the block waiting to get into the place. So, of course I am curious being in the business, and I ask someone on the line who they were there to see, and I was told it was Uncle Floyd. That was my first recollection of my introduction to him. Well, Alan Pepper is the owner of The Bottom Line, and we had become friendly over the years. The music business is very small. So, I call up Alan, and ask him who this Uncle Floyd guy is, and he tells me that he’s great, and sells out five shows on a weekend for him on a regular basis with no advertising. So, I started to book Floyd at Club Bene. Our relationship grew, and Floyd asked me to book him in other venues around the northeast, and so I did.”
“The Floyd show back then was just this little show which appeared at the birth of cable TV. Actually, it originated on the UHF dial, channel 47 on your TV. Back then it was a Spanish speaking station. Floyd literally had to go out and get his own sponsors so that he could defray the cost of producing the show. He would make his own little placards on cardboard, colored with markers and crayons with the sponsor’s name and some sort of crazy hand drawn picture of the business owner or their building or product. It was something else, but that was the true essence of the show and what people were drawn to. No glitz, no big-name writers, or comics, just a bunch of local guys and gals (Weenie) doing this zany, no-budget TV show. But he developed such a huge following that all these national touring acts wanted to come on and be part of it. I booked a lot of the national and regional acts on the show like The Ramones and Tiny Tim who became regulars, Bon Jovi, Jan and Dean, Peter Tork, Squeeze, David Johansen, Blue Oyster Cult, Joe Jackson, Cyndi Lauper, Phoebe Snow, the list goes on. I wish that I had kept better records of those days, because I would just like to look back for nostalgic sake. All precious and great memories.”
Patrick started painting in the mid-1980s, purely as a hobby. In 1992 a friend introduced his work to Natalie Best (Best Portfolio), and Natalie invited Patrick to participate in a show that she was curating at the Schering Plough Corporation Headquarters in Madison, NJ. That started a slew of activity for the artist, and he participated in well over 30 shows from the years 1992 through 1998. Some of the highlights of his career include several noteworthy events. In 1994 he was selected by the Federal Government to have two of his paintings displayed at the American Embassy in Luxembourg. In 1996 he was invited by the Center of Emerging Arts, Miami, to have five of his paintings tour the United States. The following year, he was invited by the State of New Jersey to do a three- month solo exhibition at the State House Rotunda in Trenton. The following year, he was offered a Dodge Foundation Grant to participate in the Artist in Residency Program at the prestigious Vermont School. And in 1998, Patrick was invited by music icon Sting, and tennis great John McEnroe, to participate in a fundraising art exhibition at the John McEnroe Gallery in Soho, to benefit the Rain Forest Foundation.
As Patrick’s career as an artist started to pick up momentum, he was running out of workspace in his small Ocean Grove home, and he decided to purchase a commercial loft building in downtown Asbury Park. In year 2000, after many months of looking at potential buildings to house both himself and his studio, he purchased a building on Cookman Avenue and retired from the music business to become a full-time artist. “Asbury Park was a much bigger canvas for me back then”, says the artist. Now faced with the question of whether to continue on his path of creating art, or taking on a much bigger creative event, the renovation of the downtown of Asbury Park, which was a boarded-up, dilapidated ghost town, he chose the latter, and thus became one of the essential developers of the downtown, where he still lives and works today.
Schiavino is also the founder and curator of the annual and very popular “Asbury Underground Art & Music Crawl” which had its inaugural debut in October of 2013, and now attracts thousands to the downtown each fall, and then again, each January as part of The Light of Day Winterfest, where his event has become an integral part of the fundraising for that charity. The last Asbury Underground which happened pre-pandemic featured over 300 musicians, comics, spoken word and performance artists in as many as 36 venues of which 22 displayed original art for sale to the public. For more information visit www.asburyunderground.com.
“I have spent the last 22 years working in real estate and seeing some of my vision for Asbury Park unfold in front of me. Living downtown in the middle of it all, I have had a lot to do with the shaping of the environment here,” says Schiavino. “But now, I feel that it has become too big for me and my ambitions, and it is time to go back that guy I was when I first came here and begin to steer my creative juices into my own artwork. I still feel that vibrance and fire that I once had. It just has been bottled up, or just directed elsewhere all these years. I’m looking forward to my next adventure.”