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Selected Works

Joanis Natural History 1

Jon Joanis

Natural History 1, 2023

Acrylic, wax, and mixed media on panel

11 × 14 inches (28 × 35 cm)

Jon Joanis  Emerald Bay, 2023  Acrylic, wax pastel, reflective pigments, oil and coffee grinds on panel  30 × 24 inches (76 × 61 cm)

Jon Joanis

Emerald Bay, 2023

Acrylic, wax pastel, reflective pigments, oil and coffee grinds on panel

30 × 24 inches (76 × 61 cm)

Sunflower, Snow, Dusk, 2023 Acrylic, wax pastel, and mixed media on panel 14 × 11 inches (35 × 28 cm)

Jon Joanis

Sunflower, Snow, Dusk, 2023

Acrylic, wax pastel, and mixed media on panel

14 × 11 inches (35 × 28 cm)

Autumn Snow

Jon Joanis

Autumn Snow, 2023

Acrylic, wax pastel, reflective pigments and coffee grinds on panel

30 × 24 inches (76 × 61 cm)

Jon Joanis  Night Garden/Pool, 2023

Jon Joanis

Night Garden/Pool, 2023

Acrylic, wax, and mixed media on panel

11 x 14 inches (28 x 35 cm)

Press Release

Acquavella Galleries is pleased to present Jon Joanis: Into Splendor, the artist’s first solo exhibition with the gallery, opening December 9th at its Palm Beach location. Joanis will showcase a dozen new and recent paintings, highlighting the artist's signature landscapes. 

Joanis’ vibrant landscapes, which he imbues with a mirage-like air, find their inspiration in the state between consciousness and sleep when the artist often experiences a wave of hypnagogic visions. Characterized by images and sensations that appear in rapid succession, the phenomena manifests within his mind’s eye as Joanis drifts into sleep, having encountered these visions since he was a child. These experiences, which the artist describes as visual thoughts accompanied by textural, tactile sensations, are essential to his process where he externalizes the psychic realm into his landscapes, teetering between the imagined and the observed. The resulting artworks explore the interactions between the immediacy of sensory experience and the organization of such details within memory.

Color is essential to Joanis’ practice. Departing from realism, the artist’s choice of palette come from silent observations that pull the fantastical into the mundane: brake lights reflecting off of pavement and beams of sunlight refracting across cacti are among the seemingly quotidian moments that, in the artist’s hand, become sensationally exciting. Joanis’ manipulation of paint’s materiality allows for wide variance in texture and atmosphere. Working with acrylic and wax pigments, Joanis infuses the media with flattening agents, creating bonds between layers with unique textural qualities. The layering the artist implores is akin to the process of silk-screen printing, capitalizing on overlapping textures and the plasticity between layered paints.

Joanis began his training at a young age when he apprenticed for Montreal-based artist Stanley Cosgrove, working his way into the studio by mowing* the artist’s lawn. Joanis would continue his formal training enrolling in a fine arts program at a nearby college all the while working at various jobs. Through a multitude of creative pursuits throughout his career, the artist continued to bolster his skills in fabrication, design, and painting. Working in smaller formats, Joanis experimented with different supports and media within his works, slowly developing his unique, self-taught artistic language. Simultaneously working as a jazz guitarist (“my other job,” as described by the artist) Joanis reconciles the two disparate artistic outlets, stating that, for him, the processes require different skill sets, yet his underlying philosophy for both remains constant.

The artist’s rich paintings of landscapes are experiences that encompass the entire sensory system, reveling in the minute intricacies of perception. Joanis welcomes his viewer through his compositions which organize memory, sight, and sensation into textural and color-filled observations. The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue featuring a poem titled “A Jazz Aria for the World for Jon Joanis” by Yesenia Montilla.

About Jon Joanis

Jon Joanis (b. Montreal, 1969) spent his formative years learning drawing and painting under the Canadian painter and illustrator Leslie Coppold (Royal Canadian Academy of Arts) and briefly apprenticed with Canadian painter Stanley Cosgrove, teaching high school art classes alongside his training. In 1988, after completing a Fine Arts and Design program near Montreal, Joanis had two works selected to represent Canada for a UNESCO exhibition in Paris. Throughout his career, Joanis studied and performed music professionally as a jazz guitarist, eventually becoming a student of guitarist Mike Stern in New York City. He also studied guitar and composition under Roddy Ellias in Montreal. Over the years, Jon worked as a fabricator and designer for artists and special effects companies in Montreal and Los Angeles as well as freelance graphic and interior designer. Within these fields, he utilized his skills in painting, sculpting, and model-making, which still translate into his practice today. Jon continues to play and write music alongside his artistic practice.

About Acquavella Galleries

For over 100 years, Acquavella Galleries has dealt in paintings, sculptures, and works on paper of unparalleled quality. Renowned for its expertise in the fields of 19th, 20th, and 21st century art, the gallery has sold important paintings and sculpture to private collectors and museums world-wide and regularly presents museum-quality exhibitions of Impressionist, modern, postwar, and contemporary masters. Founded by Nicholas Acquavella in the early 1920s, the gallery is now a third-generation, family-owned business, run by Bill, Eleanor, Nicholas, and Alexander Acquavella: Bill joined his father Nicholas in 1960, Bill’s daughter Eleanor joined in 1997, and his sons Nicholas and Alexander joined in 2000 and 2003 respectively.

Today, the gallery exhibits and deals in works by artists such as Francis Bacon, Jean Michel-Basquiat, Pierre Bonnard, Alexander Calder, Paul Cézanne, Edgar Degas, Willem de Kooning, Lucian Freud, Alberto Giacometti, Jasper Johns, Henri Matisse, Joan Miró, Claude Monet, Pablo Picasso, Wayne Thiebaud, and Andy Warhol, among the other giants of the late 19th, 20th, and early 21st century. On the primary market, the gallery represents contemporary artists Miquel Barceló, Wang Yan Cheng, Jacob El Hanani, Damian Loeb, and Tom Sachs.