Wilbur Niewald

Kansas City artist and former student

I first met Vincent Campanella when I was a student of his at the Kansas City Art Institute in 1950.  Through the years I have known him very well as a teacher, artist and friend.  He had a great influence on my life and it pleases me to recall and write of his remarkable qualities as an artist and teacher.

Vincent was a great teacher.  He would bring to class his broad knowledge of painting, his love of art (painting and music) and the passion and natural ability to inspire and instruct young students.  I particularly remember the critiques.  He would start slowly and deliberately talking about each student’s work and gradually build and express his thoughts with drama and passion.  He gave me a base through the teaching of formal issues, abstraction from nature and a deep appreciation of art of the past.  I believe he was one of the outstanding teachers of his time.

Vincent was a very important painter.  He was very intelligent, sensitive and skilled and produced some remarkable work in oil and watercolor.  In his early years he was highly regarded by fellow artists and critics.  Later he painted in relative isolation and was not adequately recognized in his lifetime.  I am confident he will gain increased recognition as a painter.

I feel most fortunate to have known him as artist, teacher and personal friend.

Wilbur Niewald
Professor Emeritus of Painting
The Kansas City Art Institute

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