Born in Salerno, Italy in 1905, Salvatore Pinto immigrated with his family to America in 1909. He attended the Pennsylvania Museum and School of Industrial Art (now the University of the Arts) and the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and worked in many media including painting, printmaking, photography, theatrical and furniture design.
Pinto, along with his brothers Biago and Angelo, was greatly favored and collected by Albert C. Barnes, founder of the Barnes Foundation. Through his Foundation, Barnes awarded Pinto prizes to inspire his "modernism" through travels to Europe, Corsica, and Africa. In Europe in the early 1930s, Pinto absorbed the latest trends of the avant-garde, especially the radical experiments in color of Henri Matisse. Thanks to Barnes, Pinto met Matisse and studied with him in the South of France during Three Barnes Foundation Travelling Scholarships. Matisse's images of the Mediterranean and the beaches of Nice inspired Pinto, who, upon his return to Philadelphia, developed a distinctly American repertoire of subjects, including a great series of paintings and prints inspired by the beach at Atlantic City and Long Beach Island.
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