Artist Roster

John Joseph Donato

Work with John

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Looking for funding to hire this artist for your organization? The Delaware Division of the Arts provides grants that support small budget projects that include the presentation of performing, visual, literary, media, or folk arts in communities throughout the state. Organizations that receive General Operating Support are generally not eligible to apply. Rolling deadline; submit at least 6 weeks prior to the project start date. Learn More

I focus on experiential  visual arts projects in which I can collaborate  with groups and individuals, schools, organizations, or businesses  focusing on building personal, cultural, educational, social, or historical awarness and reflection through hands on creative experiences.  

The projects also teach Growth Mindset and artistic skills while leaving  behind legacy work(s) of art for personal and public sharing and reflection.

I have also used these techniques in For-profit and Non-profit team building programs.


Creative Aging:   Whimsical Masterpeices in Pastel!    This is a fun, energetic, engaging, and empowering artistic experience for adults who would like to investigate their creative potential, socialize with peers, experiment with new artistic techniques while building a basic level of mastery using oil pastels.   Specially designed for Libraries and community centers, this turnkey program can be easily added to current operational schedules and facilities.

Creative Team Building and personal connections

Acrylic workshops

Pastel workshops

Whimsical, Storytelling and  Historical Murals

Public Awareness murals and workshops

Character Building Arts in Education Programs

Educational Arts Programs tailored to meet school / corporate curriculum

Collaborative  asthetic / environment art programs

Meditative and stress relief


I am passionate about art, specifically, the potential power of art to suggest, share, and communicate positive ideals and personal empowerment.  

I have always been inspired by Peter Max with his use of storyboarding framework to insight tension and curiosity through bold blasts of primary and secondary colors clasped in heavy outlines that create sharp contrast.   His skill in pairing words and images always appealed to my storytelling tendencies and I have experimented with my own techniques to leverage that kind of vibrancy and energy into my own whimsical concepts.  


I believe that site specific art, in the form of murals and collaborative art plays a significant role in enhancing shared spaces and enriching the human experience as it makes meaningful connections.   The ability to present new social concepts and deconstruct complex personal outcomes with ongoing public exposure inspires me to push my creativity in many diverse directions.   It challenges me to discover new techniques and systems for engaging in art that extends beyond my own skill and personal expression to that of a growing community of potential artists.


I have a degree in advertising design, and have worked in agriculture, construction, leadership development and have decades of experience in creating concepts, images, and materials for educational and corporate training.   I mention this because I have a passion for learning new skills and concepts, and this has had a significant role in defining how I am evolving as an artist.  

It’s important to mention that I am a self-taught acrylic painter and have developed my techniques and understanding of the processes through heavy experimentation and observation without instruction.   I have an inventive nature that compels me to constantly elevate my skills and seek new methods and influences.

I am always pushing conventional materials, applications, and even new technology into new territory; analyzing and studying conventional drawing and painting wisdom, picking up along the way uninfluenced experimentations of my own.   This has expanded my range from whimsical canvas portraits to large scale collaborative story telling murals, drawings and animations.   It has also led me to expand my influence beyond my own artistic discovery to teaching others how find their own, or at least a pathway for self-proclaimed “non-artists" to gain access to art as an approachable and potential passion of their own.


I have discovered that my ability in transforming spaces into inspirational and uplifting learning environments is having a measurably positive effect on the communities and schools that host them.    

The style and process in creating these works have resulted in students, teachers, community members, and the public communicating a common response; a persistent gravity pulling them into the artwork each time they see it and continuing to influence and challenge them to advance their own perspectives and awareness.

Their participation in the development of the artwork is bridging curriculum and social commitment to art and creative empowerment in a fresh new way.   This triangulation of elements is helping instill ownership and accountability throughout these populations and giving access to thousands of people who would never challenge themselves to approach art as a personal capability.   Several School systems are incorporating my program and artwork into reoccurring projects and have been presenting evidence of that value to their State Educational Boards for continued support.

I feel I am at the very beginning of this artistic journey in developing and promoting art work breaks through passive appreciation and engages in deep ownership and self-discovery for the patrons and viewers themselves.   Art that advocates for adopting a more active role of artistic activities and creative thinking as core community endeavors and values.     A potential for art to reemerge as an educational element as critical as Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math.  

Curriculum Vitae


1992                               BS Advertising, Design University of Maryland, College Park MD

Studio Concentration:   Graphic Design, Photography, Illustration, Set Design, Creative Copywriting, Desktop Publishing

Collaborative Artist Residencies

2009                               Jaggard Elementary School, Marlton NJ

2010                               Fort Garrison Elementary, BCPS / Baltimore MD

2011                               Fellowship Health Resources Underpass Mural Transformation, Seaford DE

2011                               Milanesi Elementary, Buena Vista NJ

2011                               Fellowship Health Resources, Dover DE

2012                               Rehoboth Art League, Lewes DE

2013                               Pot Springs Elementary, BCPS / Baltimore County MD

2010-12                     Brandywine Assisted Living, Selbyville DE

2013                               Delaware Center for Justice, Dover DE

2013                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, GMS, Millsboro DE

2013                               Lewisdale Park Mural, Riverdale MD

2014 & 15             Alder Avenue Middle School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2014                               Bethany Fenwick Chamber of Commerce, Fenwick Island DE

2014                               Joyanne D Miller Elementary School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2014                               Delaware Center for Justice, Office of Child Advocate, New Castle DE

2014                               Fernwood Middle School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2014                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, MES, Millsboro DE

2014                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, WMS, Millsboro DE

2014 & 18             Joshua M Freeman Foundation, SMS, Millsboro DE

2015                               Chagrin Falls Arts Alliance, Chagrin Falls OH

2015-16                     Davenport Elementary School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2015                               Alder Avenue Middle School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2015                               Joyanne D Miller Elementary School, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2015                               Most Blessed Sacrament Catholic School, Berlin MD

2015                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, SMS, Millsboro DE

2015                               Indian River School District, WMS, Bridgeville DE

2016                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, SDSA, Millsboro DE

2016                               Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ Buckingham Elementary, Berlin MD

2016                               Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ WCYFC, Berlin MD

2016 & 18             Phillip C Showell Elementary School "“ Selbyville DE

2016                               University Of DE, Laurel Redevelopment Community Bus Mural, Laurel DE

2016                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, DMS, Delmar DE

2016 & 18             Giggle-Bugs Early Learning Center

2017                               STEM Mural, Georgetown Elementary School

Artist Residencies (cont’d)

2017                               University Of DE, Laurel Redevelopment Community Bus Mural 2, Laurel DE

2017                               Slaybaugh Elementary “Bucket" Mural, EHTSD, Egg Harbor NJ

2017                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, Mariner Middle School, Harbeson DE

2017                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, Beacon Middle School, Lewes DE

2016-17                     Carver Academy, Thinking Mural, Frankford DE Positive

2017                               Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ Germantown School, Berlin MD

2017-18                     Next Step Learning Center "“ Selbyville Delaware

2017                               Frederick Douglass Elementary Lobby Transformation

2017-19                     Shue-Medill Middle School “Growth Mindset" Legacy Mural Newark, DE

2017                             Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ Germantown School, Berlin MD

2017                               Growth Mindset Mural, Shields Elementary School, Lewes DE

2017                               Holiday Inn, Ocean City MD

2018                               Growth Mindset Mural, Lord Baltimore Elementary

2018                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, “Moving Pastels Project", MMS

2018                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, “Moving Pastels Project", SMS

2018                               Joshua M Freeman Foundation, “Moving Pastels Project", SDSA

2018                               “Our Town" Growth Mindset, Phillip C Showell Elem. School "“ Selbyville DE

2018                               “Map & Wildlife Mural" The Center For The Inland Bays, Indian River Inlet DE

2018-19                     Shue-Medill Middle School “Orientation" Legacy Mural, Newark, DE

2019                               Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ Atlantic General Hospital, Berlin, MD                        

2018-19                     GW Carver Academy, Positive Mindset Mural Garden & Courtyard


2008                               Solo Exhibition, Good Earth Market, Clarksville DE

2009-10                     Group Exhibition, Children’s Beach House, Lewes DE

2010-18                     Southeastern DE Artists Studio Tour

Fundraising Programs and Performances

2015-17                     Bethany Beach Boardwalk Art Show, Bethany Beach DE

2012-17                     Quiet Resorts Charitable Fund, Bethany Beach DE

2012-17                     JMFF White Party, Selbyville DE

2013                               Lewisdale Elementary, Riverdale MD

2013                               Habitat for Humanity, Bethany Beach DE

2013-17                     Sussex County Association of Realtors, Georgetown DE

2015                               St. Elizabeth’s Catholic School, Germantown MD

2015-17                     The Delaware Botanic Gardens at Pepper Creek, Dagsboro DE

2016                               University of Maryland Alumni Fundraiser Manhattan

2016                               University of Maryland Alumni Association, Maryland Day

2016-17                     Berlin Maryland Arts Committee "“ WCYFC, Berlin MD

2018                               Lord Baltimore Elementary

2018                               St. Peters Episcopal Church, Lewes DE

2010-18                     Southern Delaware Artist’s Studio Tour

2018                               DE Center for the Inland Bays

Mural Commissions

2011                               Fellowship Health Resources, Seaford DE

2013                               Lewisdale Park, Riverdale MD

2013-19                     Bottle & Cork, Dewey DE

2013-14                     Good Earth Market, Clarksville DE

2014-19                     Highway One, Dewey DE

2015                               Bethany Boathouse, Bethany Beach DE

2015                               Touch Of Italy, Ocean City MD

2016                               Bethany Boathouse, Bethany Beach DE

2016                             Jimmy’s Grille, Dewey Beach

2016                               Jimmy’s Grille, Rehoboth Beach

2016                               Touch Of Italy, Milford DE

2017-19                     Northbeach Murals and building transformation

2018                               Town of Millville, Community History Mural Program

2018                               Gigglebugs Early Learning Center, Millsboro DE

2018                               DE Center for the Inland Bays

2018                               Germantown School Community Heritage Mural

2018                               Carver Academy, Positive Thinking / self-awareness Mural, Frankford DE

2016-18                     Next Step Early Learning Center, Selbyville DE

Awards and Honors:

2008                               Best in Show, Bug and Bud Festival

2010                               Buena Vista Township Mayors Artistic Citizen Award

2016                               Runner up “Community Spirit Award" Bethany Fenwick Chamber of Commerce

Artist Information

Photography, Painting, Design Arts
Workshops, Teaching Artist, Social Functions, School Residencies, Public Art, Master Classes, Lectures / Public Speaking, Creative Aging Classes, Commissioned Work
Special Needs, Preschool, Older Adult, Kindergarten to 5th Grade, Adult, 9th to 12th Grade, 6th to 8th Grade
Regional Availability
Southern Delaware
1G Clubhouse Drive
Ocean View DE 19970


John Donato Berlin Community Mural 3