Michael Scolaro

 

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A Biography of the Artist: Michael J. Scolaro


Atlantic Room
A reproduction of "Atlantic Coast" hangs in the Atlantic Room of the QM2.

Artist Michael J. Scolaro, M.D., one of the world’s top AIDS doctors and researchers, passionately believes that creativity is the spiritual thread that links nature, medicine and art. This belief is evident when studying the artist’s life, which embraces the fields of science, medicine, philanthropy, the arts and painting.

Born and raised in the Bronx, Dr. Scolaro was one of four children who benefited from their parents’ belief in education and the appreciation of art and music. Proximity to Manhattan allowed the young Scolaro to take full advantage of art museums, theatres, educational opportunities and city life at its best.

Entering Columbia University at the young age of 15, Dr. Scolaro went on to study medicine and neuropsychiatry at Boston University’s School of Medicine. As a young doctor practicing at St. Vincent Hospital in New York City, he kept his artistic spirit alive and well, performing as a madrigal singer with a prominent group specializing in music from the Medieval and Renaissance periods. He later performed in legendary clubs such as the Copacabana and Upstairs at the Downstairs, befriended by such legends as Dixie Carter, Morgana King and Blossom Dearie.

In the 1970s, Dr. Scolaro moved west to Los Angeles to become a professor at the University of Southern California. Once there, he established a pain management clinic at St. Vincent Medical Center – the first of its kind to be sanctioned by Medicare.

In 1981, at the very beginning of what is now recognized as the AIDS pandemic, Dr. Scolaro began to see patients afflicted with the disease. The overwhelming need of these patients – and their growing numbers – caused him to switch the focus of his practice to the treatment of patients with HIV and AIDS. Dr. Scolaro’s cutting-edge research soon positioned him as a leading clinician in the treatment of AIDS and HIV.

But it was not enough to help just individual patients in his private practice in Beverly Hills. Dr. Scolaro, who had for many years balanced a wide-range of scientific and artistic endeavors, founded Let There Be Hope, a non-profit medical research institute dedicated to research into HIV/AIDS and allied clinical disorders, in 1994.

For years a collector of fine arts from around the world, Dr. Scolaro began to paint five years ago. A frame made empty when one of the works in his private collection was being re-framed initially inspired him. The result of his labors, Il Passero Solitario, only whetted his appetite for more painting.

His impatience in finding new treatment for sufferers of HIV/AIDS is in stark contrast to Dr. Scolaro’s approach to painting, which reflects his patience in finding just the right light, the right interplay of forces, to reveal nature in all its passion, tranquility and vitality.

Dr. Scolaro’s paintings have been exhibited numerous times in Paris, Manhattan, Geneva, Kansas City, Laguna Beach and Los Angeles.

Michael J Scolaro