Jon Seals – An Artist You Should Know About

In the winding path that has led me to Art – both as an educator and as an artist in my own right – I have been so fortunate to meet some pretty amazing artists along the way.  Artists that inspire me, influence me, and make my day brighter simply because I have the good fortune to know them.
Derrick Riley, Jon Hale, Toni Hobbs, Ross Zirkle, Natalie Brockman, Stevie Moore, Jim Foose, Bob Franzini  – well, the list could go on and on. I didn’t even me mention Li or Gary Mesa-Gaido!
This list of amazing artist – and those known but not listed because it would be too long – were all those I met in post-secondary (college) or while working on my Master’s. They are peers, instructors, and in many cases my friends. Still, the first artist – aside from my art teacher, Mr. B – to really impress, inspire, and move me was my friend, Jon Seals.
I encourage you to check out Jon’s website for info about him and his work. What I can tell you about Jon is that he is extremely talented, has a unique artistic vision, and is just an all around great guy.

Jon Seals, September 19, 2006, 2010 - mixed media on found paper

Jon Seals, September 19, 2006, 2010 – mixed media on found paper

Jon Seals, Bedroom Window Latch, 2001 - oil on panel

Jon Seals, Bedroom Window Latch, 2001 – oil on panel

Jon Seals, Students 4, 2009 - oil on canvas

Jon Seals, Students 4, 2009 – oil on canvas

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Jon works in a variety of mediums and is beyond proficient in them all. While I find his paintings and drawings to be appealing, it is his mixed media/collage work that I enjoy the most. In all of Jon’s work – and the more successful pieces by any artist – he pulls his inspiration from what he knows, whether it is family, work, or some other interest. My recent purchase of his piece, Of Course God, deals with the loss of his brother.
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We have all dealt with great loss – sadly some of those loses come way before we expect or are prepared for them. What is intriguing about Jon’s work is that why he references how his brother passed away, it is not the focus of his work. It’s an element for the viewer to see, but it is the action between siblings that is the focus. Those images speak to a vibrant life and to the dynamic between the brothers. While the image Jon shares (him and his brother wrestling) is very personal, I think all of us with siblings/relatives we are close to can identify with how the dynamics of age, experiences, and personalities play on our relationships. What I find the most moving – and comforting – is that Jon doesn’t appear to question why his brother is gone, but works towards acceptance and that some things can’t be explained or justified.
The constant of Jon’s work – to me – is that it is very positive.   Memories and how memories change over time are a focus of his, and his work captures those moments.  What I appreciate the most is that the memories he works from are those “small” moments which turn out to be the most important over time.  As one who teeters on the edge of being too negative, or, rather, gets too focused on the downside, it is inspiring to see work that shines in a positive light – strives for it at any rate. With a new chapter starting in Jon’s life, I look forward to see what direction he goes with his subject matter and media.

 

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. cryptotox
    Jul 18, 2013 @ 07:55:54

    Is this piece of art a new acquisition Staci? I like it a lot. Can’t wait to learn more about Jon.

    Reply

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