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Deaf-Blind Artist

Kearny, New Jersey

About the Artist...

Jon was born profoundly deaf and with a hereditary condition that affects the retina. He is both deaf and blind. To communicate, he reads Braille and uses tactile sign language.

Jon has exhibited at the Central Pennsylvania Festival of the Arts at Penn State University’s Robeson Gallery, The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Red Horse Gallery in Freehold, the Blackwell Street Center for the Arts in Morristown, the New Jersey Commission for the Blind in Newark, and various venues throughout New Jersey through his affiliation with Arts Unbound and VSA arts, among others. While in high school, he was a recipient of the VSA arts of New Jersey Student Arts Excellence Award in Visual Art (Fine Art) and a NJ Governor’s Award in Arts Education.

Jon plays the drums, is a member of the Middle Atlantic Blind Golfers Association, and enjoys boxing, martial arts and rock climbing.  He spent two years at Helen Keller National Center, a vocational training center for individuals who are deaf-blind, and is now a student at Bergen Community College, Paramus, NJ. He’s employed as a technologist specialist through the Federal Communications Commission’s iCanConnect program that brings communications technology to those who live with both hearing and sight impairments.

...& His Work

“I make art because I enjoy seeing colors come together on paper, and I feel calm and relaxed when I create pictures.

“I have always liked creating colorful things with my hands. I like painting, charcoal and sculpting the best. I like to paint with bright colors on large paper because then I can see the colors better. Charcoal has great contrast, so it’s easy for me to see, too. I like to work with clay because I can feel it change into something that other people can touch and enjoy. I also like to combine different kinds of art, like painting and printmaking. I make tactile art so that people can enjoy it using their sense of touch.

“It doesn’t matter that I am deaf-blind, because I enjoy the process of making art, feeling how my body moves, and seeing the colors and shapes come together. 

“I hope people will find a lot of details to look at in my work, and that they will appreciate the feelings and emotions in all my art.”

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