Cedarburg Cultural Center
Press Release

The Cedarburg Cultural Center presents retrospective exhibit featuring Cedarburg Photographer, Tony Cilento.

The Cedarburg Cultural Center is proud to host an upcoming retrospective exhibit featuring Cedarburg photographer, Tony Cilento.

By - Jan 9th, 2015 04:56 pm

CEDARBURG, WI: The Cedarburg Cultural Center (CCC) is proud to host an upcoming retrospective exhibit featuring Cedarburg photographer, Tony Cilento.

The exhibit spanning photographic artwork from the 1960s to the present will be held in the CCC’s Center Gallery from Wednesday, January 14 through Sunday, February 1, 2015, with most artwork available for purchase. A public opening reception will be held on Friday, January 16 from 5-8 pm. Complimentary appetizers and wine will be served and the artist will speak publically about the varied experiences of his lengthy career.

Tony Cilento began his life in Rochester, New York as the son of hard-working Italian parents and has since built a legacy in the field of photography. Cilento received his education from New York University, Germain School of the Spectrum, (now called Germain School of Photography), School of Modern Photography, Marquette University, Layton School of the Arts, and the Winona School of Photography, for which he has also served on the faculty board. His major field of academic study was psychology and art, and he holds a Bachelor of Science degree from Marquette University.

Since entering the profession in Milwaukee in 1962, he has received over 400 print awards from the Wisconsin Professional Photographers’ Association, including many “Court of Honor” awards. From the Professional Photographers of America, he has been awarded over 300 print merits, which include loan collection awards.

In 1978, Tony was selected for membership in the most elite photographic organization in the world, “CameraCraftsmen of America.” The group is limited to forty members and is the “Who’s Who” in Photography. At the time, inclusion into the elite group required a 100% vote from all existing members- providing a validation of the quality of his work from his peers.

More than a photographer, Tony’s philosophy of caring for the needs of people led “Photography by Cilento” to become one of the most innovative photographic studios in the world. With two locations and a staff of 100, Tony photographed tens of thousands of people, including children, high school seniors, families and brides, as well as pioneering field programs for organizations such as the Tripoli Shrine, the Leukemia Society of America and Summerfest.

In 1987, Cilento sold his company to “Lifetouch, Inc.” and assumed a vital role as their Vice President of Photographic Development for five divisions. What Cilento is most proud of at Lifetouch was to have been the voice of the 25,000- 30,000 full-time and seasonal photographers within the company. He stressed the “why we photograph” less than the “how”, creating a culture of “the best photography starts with the heart of it.”

Over the years, Tony has been the official photographer for many pageants in the Greater Milwaukee area and in Wisconsin, including “Miss Milwaukee” and “Miss Wisconsin” for ten years. He was a judge for the “Miss Universe Pageant “and was honored by being selected as the official photographer for “Miss America.” Tony was associated with the National Football League and the Green Bay Packers for seven years, photographing the team and filming and producing the “Vince Lombardi Show.” As an instructor at the Winona School of Photography, Tony has taught his principle to young photographers from all across the world. In addition to his activities in the United States, he has also lectured and taught in Mexico, Canada, Australia and Europe.

Tony has also photographed many celebrities, including Neil Diamond, Diana Ross, Whitney Houston, Cher, Frank Sinatra, the Bee Gees, Michael Bolton, Sting, Tina Turner, Presidents Ford and Reagan, among others.

Still an active ambassador and consultant, Tony officially retired from Lifetouch in 2011 after over 50 years in the profession. Upon his retirement, Cilento realized his dream of an African safari. Armed not with a gun, but with his camera, he captured some of the most amazing images of the people, places, flora and fauna of Tanzania, which will be represented in the retrospective exhibit at the Center.

The Center is free and open to the public Tuesday through Saturday 10 am-5 pm, and Sunday 12-4 pm. The Center is closed on Monday.

The galleries, classrooms, and restrooms of Cedarburg Cultural Center are wheelchair accessible.

The mission of the Cedarburg Cultural Center is to provide a gathering place to celebrate community, arts and local heritage.

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