Jonathan Santlofer

Jonathan Santlofer art
art by Jonathan Santlofer

400 Series Charcoal

About Jonathan Santlofer

photo of Jonathan Santlofer

Jonathan Santlofer is a well known artist with work in such collections as the Art Institute of Chicago; Institute of Contemporary Art, Tokyo; Newark Museum, NJ; Montclair Museum of Art, NJ; Mississippi Museum of Art; Norton Simon Museum, Pasadena; J.P. Morgan Chase; AT & T; IBM, NY; Bank of America, CA; among others.

He is the recipient of two National Endowment for the Arts painting grants and has been a Visiting Artist at the American Academy In Rome, the Vermont Studio Center and serves on the board of Yaddo, the oldest arts community in the U.S.

His artwork has been written about and reviewed in such publications as The New York Times, Art In America, Artforum, ArtNews, Arts, Interview, Portfolio, and he has been profiled in The New York Times Sunday Magazine, Newsday, the Chicago Tribune, and the Washington Post, and more...

Santlofer, also a successful writer, has published five novels and his short stories appear in many anthologies and collections. He lives and works in New York City.

Interview with the Artist

How did you interpret using the Strathmore Thistle for the pad cover artwork?  Anything else you'd like to share about your piece?
I used the thistle as part of a plant motif that frames my portrait of the artist, Marcel Duchamp, and one of his artworks, and ties the drawing together.

How did the Strathmore paper you used for the project affect your drawing (or painting) techniques?
The paper's tooth set up a wonderful texture for the charcoal, which I allowed to show through. I use Strathmore bristol plate when I draw with pencil because of it's smooth surface, but the charcoal paper was perfect for exploiting the effects of this particular medium.

Which artists inspire you?
So many and for different reasons.

Marcel Duchamp has always been an important artist to me, which is why I chose to draw his portrait for the pad cover. The way in which he moved from painting to questioning the nature of art set the groundwork for so much modern and contemporary art, and his intelligence and playfulness is still with us and always will be.

As for painters, Cezanne, Manet, Giotto, Caravaggio, Velasquez, Giotto, John Singer Sargent, Willem de Kooning, and of course Picasso.

Different artists become important to you because of something that's happening in your work at a particular moment.

What advice would you give to beginning artists?
Work. Experiment. Be brave. Never wait for inspiration or you will be waiting a very long time, just work every day. And never let anyone tell you that you can't do something in your art -- just do it!