Jon Wassom

“I have always been drawn to things that have involved movement, music, and the arts. I would consider myself a very versatile artist, and I believe it is because of my diverse experiences growing up. I have been described by many people as a “Renaissance Man”. Starting as early as 6 years old, I focused on learning to play musical instruments such as the piano, trumpet, mellophone, french horn, and snare drum. I received my black belt in Tae Kwon Do. I’ve always enjoyed flying through the air, so I became a gymnast for 8 years, and then switched to diving in high school, placing 4th at state.

It wasn’t until I was 16 years old that I found my passion for painting and drawing. I was fortunate enough to be the first person in the Springville, Utah Museum of Art’s history to receive a Master’s award in the All-State High School show 2 years in a row. There are only 4 awards in the state given out. One of the pieces was purchased by a museum curator. I also was published in 2001 in The Artist’s Magazine for winning The Artist on the Rise competition in the Experimental Category. Surprisingly, I won out of 13,000 entries.

After graduating High School, I became interested in figure skating. Once again, I found myself flying through the air. This was due to watching the Olympians practice for the 2002 Olympics in Salt Lake City. Within a few years, I got to perform in the Sun Valley, Idaho Ice Show with World and Olympic Champions.

I attended college at Utah State University and was awarded a full-tuition art scholarship in 2002. In 2006, I was able to apprentice under the well-known artist and Yale graduate Woody Shepherd. He was my professor at the time, and I was taught most of what I know in terms of stenciling, color theory, additive/subtractive processes, and the freedom of exploration. I was also fortunate to learn how to build structurally sound panels.

Ever since, I’ve been able to work as a full-time artist in the Washington D.C. and Baltimore areas. I was also given the opportunity to jury a show for Touchstone Gallery in D.C titled “Art on the Small Side”. While being a gallery member there, I was selected for a commission by Lexus Hybrid Living as the premier artist in a Fairmont Hotel Suite in D.C. The entire suite was designed around my work. Everything was in black and white, except for the color of my work on the walls. I found out afterward, that celebrities such as Nicolas Cage have stayed there. My work was also published in Spaces, in the Summer of 2008 issue.

I moved to Phoenix, AZ in 2010 to train in pairs figure skating. I also attended massage therapy school and have worked as a Licensed Massage Therapist. My experience with athletic and artistic movement, as well as the anatomy of the human body strongly influences my work. Various spiritual concepts are also a major influence. The artists that influence my work are vast and many, but to name a few are: Richard Diebenkorn, Gustav Klimt, Rembrandt, Euan Uglow, R.B. Kitaj, Claude Monet, Edward Hopper, Jackson Pollock, Gerhard Richter, and Vincent Van Gogh.

Currently, I reside in Salt Lake City, UT with my wonderful husband Felipe and our dogs Jax and Leena. I’m gratefully living a life I never dreamed of as a full-time artist. I just successfully completed my 6th solo show in my career thus far.”