Artist: Jason Schoener
Size: 24" x 20"
Frame: 27" x 23 ½" in original period frame (possibly artist painted)
Medium: oil on canvas
Subject: Abstract/Modern Landscape
Created: pre 1966
Notated: handwritten on frame (possibly in the artist's hand) "Untitled, Before 1966" "Probably from cross country sketch","L.A.".
For your consideration, an oil on canvas abstract painting by Jason Schoener (1919-1997). This abstract landscape by Jason Schoener measures (canvas) 24" x 20" and is notated (possibly in the artist's hand) "Untitled, Before 1966" "Probably from cross country sketch","L.A.". The painting is created in subtle tones of pink, mauve, grays and whites within a geometric framework of soft rounded shapes within larger geometrically framed shapes. The painting seems to radiate an organic "warm humanist" feeling that counterpoints the elegant and rationalist tone created by its more formalist geometric aesthetics. This work represents a very fine example of this important Bay Area artist, created during his most important and noteworthy period.
Born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1919, Schoener came from a family of distinguished American artists. He was the nephew of sculptor/painter William Zorach and his wife, painter Marguerite Zorach. Beginning in 1939, Schoener spent his summers at the Zorach family farm in Georgetown, Maine, where he helped with chores and studied art with his Uncle William. Jason's cousin, artist Dahlov Ipcar (the Zorachs' daughter), was also part of those summer art sessions. In 1941 Schoener graduated from the Cleveland Institute School of Art and spent a year at the School of Architecture at Western Reserve University. He enrolled in the U.S. Naval Reserve at Northwestern University and was commissioned as an ensign in 1944, serving at the Eniwetok Atoll in the Pacific. After the war, Schoener began his teaching career at Munson-Williams-Proctor Institute School of Arts in Utica, NY while also earning a master's degree from Columbia. In 1946 Schoener purchased the historic Washington Heal house, built in 1798, and located near his uncle's farm in Georgetown. In 1951 he married Virginia Worley, and they moved to California, where Schoener served as an instructor, department chairman, and dean at California College of Arts and Crafts. Meanwhile, Schoener continued to use his Georgetown home as a summer studio, while also finding time to travel to Europe and Latin America. Scenes he observed in Scotland, Greece and Latin America, in particular, found their way into many of his oil paintings. Other favorite subject matter included floral still life, naval operations scenes and, of course, land and seascapes from around Georgetown. Throughout his career, he worked in both oils and watercolor. Schoener's other teaching assignments included Mills College, and the Athens Technological Institute in Greece. Over the span of almost two decades, Schoener had several solo exhibitions at the Midtown Gallery on East 57th Street in New York.
In September of 1993, Schoener exhibited at the Boyden Gallery at St. Mary's College of Maryland. In 1994, Schoener donated 21 of his paintings done during the war to the U.S. Naval Academy. Schoener and his wife were in California at the time of his death in 1997.
1. The Georgetown Historical Society:
2. Article entitled: "Art Patronage in Greece" by Jason Schoener, 1966, in the College Art Association Journal.
3. Susie Westly Wren, artist and owner of West Island Gallery
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