Martelli Unveils Lincoln Art Piece at City Hall

By day Matthew Martelli is the water facilities administrator for the Revere Water and Sewer Department.

But when he returns to his home, he becomes award-winning artist and oil painter Matthew Martelli.

Residents and historians can view Martelli’s latest creation at Revere City Hall: an amazing oil canvas of Abraham Lincoln, 16th President of the United States.

Mayor Brian Arrigo and Matthew Martelli stand beside his portrait of Abraham Lincoln at City Hall.

Mayor Brian Arrigo graciously welcomed the 65-year-old city employee to City Hall with a special unveiling ceremony for the portrait which is located on the first floor across from the Election Department office.

In a glowing review of Martelli’s artwork Arrigo later wrote on Facebook:  “All of our municipal employees are talented, hardworking individuals, but that talent often extends far beyond City Hall. Thank you to Water and Sewer employee Matt Martelli for his donation of “Abe” – an oil on canvas of President Abraham Lincoln. The attention to detail is incredible, and the craziest part is that he did this in just two days. I’m always blown away by the talent of our municipal employees! Be sure to stop by and take a look next time you’re in City Hall.”

The timing for the Abraham Lincoln artwork is spot on: President Lincoln’s birthday is Feb. 12 while Presidents’ Day will be celebrated on Feb. 21.

 Martelli said the inspiration for the Abraham Lincoln piece came to him after reading a book about the Civil War. Lincoln served as President from 1861 to 1865.

“That’s what got me interested,” he said. “I had a canvas and I wanted to do a portrait, and Abe Lincoln was the one I chose.”

Martelli said he is considering a second portrait of a major figure in American history to complement the Lincoln artwork at City Hall.

A self-taught, lifelong artist

Martelli has worked in the Water and Sewer Department for more than 16 years.

“But I’ve been an artist for years now – actually my whole life,” said Martelli. “My twin brother (Mark Martelli) is an artist, and my children (Paul Martelli and Max Martelli) are artists. Paul went to fine arts school and Max was in the U.S. Navy, but he’s an incredible artist. It’s in the blood.”

Martelli is a 1975 graduate of Northeast Regional High School in Wakefield. He has no formal art training.

“It’s been all self-taught,” related Martelli.

He has showcased his works at spring art shows for the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. He has done many lithographs and has a painting on display at the 600 Club inside Fenway Park. There have been numerous awards throughout his career.

“I’m proud of my work,” said Martelli, whose website is martellistudio.com.

A famous Revere family

Matthew Martelli is a first cousin to baseball legends, Tony Conigliaro and Billy Conigliaro, who both played for the Boston Red Sox. Matthew’s father, the late Vincent A. Martelli Sr., was Teresa Martelli Conigliaro’s brother.

Vincent Martelli Sr. founded the Revere Little League, along with Edward McLeavy. His mother is the late Phyllis M. (Achenbach) Martelli. The former Achenbach School on Park Avenue was named after Matthew Martelli’s great uncle, Max Achenbach.

Matthew’s brother, Vincent A. Martelli Jr., is one of the greatest hitters in Harvard baseball history and played in the Cleveland Indians (now Cleveland Guardians) organization. Vincent Jr. also holds an MBA from Harvard Business School.

“We’re Revere people,” said Matthew Martelli.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.