Tetrachromat Artist Concetta Antico Has Big Plans for the Near Future


Concetta Antico

Artists tend to see the world differently than the rest of us, but it is especially true of Concetta Antico, the world's first known Tetrachromat artist, who literally sees things in a different way. The Huffington Post explains,"Tetrachromats have a fourth, extra cone class for color vision and while normal people see one million colors, Ms. Antico and a small handful of other women like her identified through DNA testing so far can potentially see orders of magnitude more."


Concetta's ability can be seen in her wide array of paintings, which are largely influenced by both color and nature. In addition to enhancing her own abilities, Concetta tells JustLuxe about her desire to develop other tetrachromats' artistic senses.


When did you begin working as an artist?


I first started to paint in oils at about age 7. I became a professional artist and instructor over 25 years ago when I opened my school The Salon Of Art which hosted a gallery for my work. I have painted my entire life since I could hold a brush.


Who have been your main influences?


Many have influenced me. The first is my Mother who told me at age 9 that I would be a great artist and teacher and who was inherently creative. I am proud of my Sister and her great talent as an artist (google Louisa Antico, Australian).   I have prayed to Monet before when stuck on a technical method!  I sing the praises of John Singer Sargent, Robert Henri, Rupert Bunny, Norman Lindsay, and Joaquin Sorrolla for their great genius and technical wonder.  I revere and hope to channel the spirit of Berthe Morisot over all others. To me she was the supreme Impressionist, in my opinion. A woman unrecognized by society for her immense talent. In her work I see art sublime. I also possibly see another with the vision gift I have.


How would you define your style?


Obviously colorful - but it goes far beyond that.  They are authentic as I do all my works only in just one sitting. Due to this, there is something of a spiritual moment in them, as a mother knows, and I feel I birth them from me. They are sometimes trance-like in the process that is pulled from deep inside me.  They have an energy, depth and luminance that can only be seen when facing them.  My brushwork is poetic, but lively. Many say the energy evoked from my work is joyful and makes them happy.  They stand for beauty. Some say they have a special alchemy that cannot be explained.  Recently I was told they vibrate and have a holographic effect. I found that Rad!


You’ve been described as is the world’s first documented artist who is also a Tetrachromat.  Can you explain what that means?


I have the genotype for a 4th cone class or receptor. This means that I have the potential to resolve 99 million more colors than regular vision. They call it “super vision". They are continuing to study me. I am described as the “perfect storm” by my researchers as they have not found another who has the genotype I have combined with the one hundred thousand hours of color training due to my lifelong profession and the aptitude I have placed to my genetic gift.   I am the world’s first authenticated Tetrachromat artist as a result. 


You’ve been recently been featured in the BBC and the Huffington Post, why do you think this story is resonating with the media right now?


Tetrachromatic research is new and amazing science.  The fact that the super vision genotype can exist and can be “grown” to its greatest potential in a human being is groundbreaking news. The fact that I am a master artist who has taken the gift to another level, and who, through my work can portray the gift on canvas for others to see and witness, is of world interest. My works stand for a lesson in what is really there on our planet. I have taken my gift to a supreme level.


When did you first realize you were both an artist and a Tetrachromat?


I only found out about the tetrachromacy in Dec 2012 - I have known I was an artist my entire life.


How do you feel it’s influenced your art? 


I cannot say that it influenced my art. Others can say that in hindsight or in retrospectives when I am gone. Yes it has been there all of my life and has been the foundation of my style, but unbeknownst to me. It is more that my art has influenced - or rather impacted my tetrachromacy. As stated, without my lifelong history as an artist and the development and immersement in the process of it and particularly color and value mixing, the tetrachromacy would not have been expressed to the level the researchers are concluding. Now, with the knowledge of it, we can see that the tetrachromacy is expressed in and through my art. That is the wonderful new thing.


You’ve lived and worked both in the U.S. and Australia, do you feel that your art has been influenced by the two cultures?  If so how


Absolutely.  I am born of the essence of Australia. It is in my blood, my spirit, my heart.  Growing up there the beauty and unique nature of the natural bush was my playground. As a result I am a huge nature girl. However it was not until The United States, and particularly sunny San Diego that I first experienced painting en plein air - and well. San Diego so mirrors Sydney that I found I lost my heart here too. Nature, oceans & sand, flora and fauna beauty, and stunning sunlight greatly influence my works, and both cities are abundant in all three - they shaped my artistic soul.


You also teach art.  I read that one of your dreams is to develop a training system to help all Tetrachromatic children realize their potential.  Do you feel being a Tetrachromat can also help you teach those without Tetrachromatic vision? 


Yes, yes and yes.  As a Tetrachromat I am able to resolve much more color as we have noted. As a result I can share that color expertise with others.  Tetrachromatic children, (or adults for that matter) need to be shown how to grow their supervision gift.  Those with regular vision need to learn how to identify and see more color, I do this every day at my school - it works! As for this with color deficiencies, i.e.: “color blind.” I have been able to show them much more color in their world and bridge their color gap, I have done this with several students including my own daughter. I am dedicated to this and other color vision related causes.


What are you currently working on?


I hope to create a school program for Tetrachromats (both adults and children) and for regular or color deficient vision sight persons to learn how to see more color!


My next two shows are “Nostalgia ~  Portraying the Past in Paint” - February 14 and “Billabongs, Bunyips and Gum Nuts - The Australia Show” March 28th - all will feature all new works!


You’re an internationally renowned artist, if you were to give one piece of advice to aspiring artists, what would that be?


Follow your gifts and your heart. Never give up on your dreams. Practice until you no longer have the strength to do more, then practice again. Stay TRUE to your subject matter - the stuff that moves you - don’t sell out to commercialism.  LEARN your craft well. Don’t quit the day before the miracle - I was told that once and it has, and still does carry me through. I guess that was way more than one piece!



Check out Concetta and learn more about her super sight at

Concetta Antico

A Tetrachomat Fanfare
Concetta Antico

Peacocks on Parade

Carly Zinderman

Carly Zinderman is a Senior Staff Writer for JustLuxe, based just outside of Los Angeles, CA. Since graduating from Occidental College with a degree in English and Comparative Literary Studies, she has written on a variety of topics for books, magazines and online publications, but loves fashion and style best. In her spare time, when she?s not writing, Carly enjoys watching old movies, reading an...(Read More)

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