In 2022 Joe Monteleone graduated from the Box Hill Institute in Victoria Australia with a Diploma of Visual Arts, specialization in printmaking.
Deafblind identity is central to Joe’s art practice. Beginning as a personal hobby to process and express emotions, Joe’s practice has evolved to create work that additionally aims to raise public awareness about Deafblind perspective, experience, identity and access.
Joe’s first art show was the group exhibition “All the Colours” at Federation Square, Melbourne’s central hub for arts, culture and public events, showcasing Deafblind Artists from all over Victoria.
In 2020 his work “Through My Eyes” exploring themes of vision loss and grief was included in the Linden Art Gallery “Postcard Show” featuring a collection of artists around Australia.
For International Day of People with Disability 2020, Joe was selected by the Australia Broadcasting Corporation to be a part of their news programming spotlighting his achievements as a Deafblind artist and community advocate.
In 2021, as a recipient of the Thrive Arts Grant, Joe held his first solo exhibition, “Breaking The Barriers” at Gasworks Arts Park.
Following this, Joe’s work was exhibited at the Castlemaine Art Museum as a finalist of the 2021 Experimental Print Prize.
Most recently in 2022 Joe received more media coverage, with The Guardian News organization interviewing him for a feature article in their culture section on his art and deafblind identity.
In addition to this, he spent the last year creating his most ambitious work yet with the support of a grant from the City of Melbourne; A large scale linocut print of Flinders Street Station, a landmark iconic to his home city of Melbourne, and culturally significant as a meeting place for the local Deafblind community, exhibited at Federation Square in January 2023.
I am a Deafblind artist specializing in printmaking. I have Usher’s Syndrome type 1, which means I was born Deaf, experiencing gradual vision loss over time.
My art is inseparable from my Deafblind identity. The works I create are an expression of my inner emotional world, unique perspective, culture and lived experience. Tactility is central to my carving process, playing with texture by touch. Aesthetically, art and access merge in bold use of contrast between black and white, which is visually clearer for those with low vision, including myself.
In all my works I strive to raise awareness and demonstrate what Deafblind people are capable of when ableist attitudes and societal barriers are removed. I hope my journey is part of creating a more accessible culture within the art world for Deaf and Disabled artists and audiences alike.