About Michael

Michael Israel is known worldwide for his Art in Concert performances described as “Cirque Du Soleil meets Picasso.”  Michael appears as a madman gone insane on stage, recklessly splashing paint and tossing paintbrushes into the air as random chaos ensues… miraculously it all comes together into a heart-touching image so profound that the entire audience leaps to their feet, cheering, often with tears running down their faces!

It is a  mind-blowing art & music experience that you will remember for the rest of your life!   

Michael’s Artistic journey began at age 2




First Art Critic

I was maybe 2 years old and drew on a wall in our home with crayons. My mom critiqued my work by giving me a smart smack on the butt and saying, Don’t do that again! It’s been parental revenge ever since then!        – Michael Israel

His father was far more critical, often telling Michael to get a “real” job… Read the story below!

Michael’s need for expression led him to explore many artistic tools and mediums. In 1968, age 8, a neighbor introduced him to Karate. 

Michael quickly became obsessed with Karate and the ability to express himself in focused movement.

The combat aspect of his Karate training would later prove to be life-saving for Michael and others on more than one occasion as well. 

Minutes per painting

Million Fans

Paintbrushes per show

Cups of Coffee

Michael’s years of intense Karate training, often 8-hrs per day with many weekends spent sleeping at the dojo, spilled over into his painting and led to his renown as the original “Speed Painter,” a term coined by the media for completing recognizable larger-than-life images on huge canvasses in only minutes.

To understand Michael’s journey to becoming a world renowned artist, entertainer, motivational speaker, and philanthropist… and why Michael calls his work “Art in Concert” and dislikes the term “Speed Painter” (which he says describes only the most obvious and superficial aspects of his work), you must understand not only the technical progression of his work, but also it’s spiritual and intrinsic metamorphosis, by peeking into the heart and soul of the artist himself. 

Michael’s Skills

While most artists spend a great deal of time, often days, weeks, or perhaps months, painstakingly completing a single small canvas, Michael comes onto the stage and together with the energy and spirit of his audience completes as many as 9 huge canvasses during a single performance. Each work is in synergy with the artwork before it and the next, each with a profound message, and each done in mere minutes with lightning fast precision developed from years of Karate training. It is easy to understand why the media calls it “Speed Painting”, and unfortunate that the message and the personal experience for each viewer is not communicated in the term “Speed Painting”.

Those who experience Michael live become mesmerized with his wild frenzy of splashing paint across a huge canvas and tossing paintbrushes into the air, in rhythm to powerful music with all the theatrical lighting and special effects of a concert or play.

It is an inspirational experience, filled with excitement and a profound moment of self-discovery; as each image is revealed, so too is each viewer’s innermost beliefs and emotions!

  • Engaging! 110% 110%
  • Emotionally Powerful! 110% 110%
  • Communicative! 110% 110%
  • Empowering! 110% 110%

Few realize that Michael’s talent and artistry is as much in crafting and choreographing his work off stage as it is performing it on stage. The ability to coax his audience to see with their hearts and emotions is anything but haphazard!

Michael carefully chooses his subject matter, music, colors, and the order and intensity in which it all comes together. He knows at what exact moment his audience will gasp or cheer, when goose bumps will raise on their arms, or when tears will well up in their eyes, as he feels those very same emotions. He brings his audience with him on an artistic and emotional roller-coaster rider like no other, and it is evident the emotions of the entire room are infused into each work! 

At a homeland security event in Washington, DC, Michael brought cheers and tears to the entire room filled with 3,500 of our nation’s bravest and toughest men and women.

“Great Art goes beyond the Senses and Sensibilities to touch the Soul.”

-Michael Israel

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