Jean Weinbaum

The artistic works of Mr. Jean Weinbaum cannot be confused with those of any other abstract artist during the last one hundred years who painted, such as Kandinsky, or of sculptural art that turned, independently, like the works made by Alexander Calder. Weinbaum, the painter who was born and trained in Zurich, Switzerland and who has lived in San Francisco since 1960, neither borrowed from nor copied from anyone else, and what he has achieved he has arrived at on his own.

Weinbaum creates collages by first painting on paper and using those papers as the medium to cut apart to create the elements of his larger "collaged" paintings. By controlling the vibrancy of the paint upon paper Weinbaum infuses light into the finished works, and by adding more paint to the edges of the geometric shapes they glow, vibrate and impact the whole of the work with greater importance. Often Weinbaum's collages move with rhythm and with vibrancy, not only from the impact of bright color, but from the control of shape and compositions. The compositions of Weinbaum are always innovative and surprising, never predictable.

Weinbaum's sand paintings, in bright blue and rust red, combine sand from California’s pacific coast and paint applied to canvas. The works use basic and primal shapes, like those washed up by the tide or made by human fingers, and those basic shapes reach into our consciousness easily and powerfully. The sand paintings are contemporary with regard to design, modern in terms of this century but timeless within the history of art. More than ripples on the sand Weinbaum's art cannot be washed away, but always remains affixed to canvases.

California is often the subject of Weinbaum's work, and the nuances of the golden state live within his abstract colors and bold compositions. The sunlight, the rainbows, the beaches and the palm trees all exist at once in Jean's paintings, sliced by moving leaf fronds and waving blue skies. The Pacific Ocean is present, and the salt air is unpredictable. Winds move through the abstracted shapes, jangling wind chimes and disturbing flowers. Weinbaum's California is a noisy riot of celebration which captures the character and profile of the dynamic city of San Francisco and the state he calls home.

With basic shapes and clear colorations Weinbaum has created abstract compositions clearly his own. His paintings, combining paint and sand, are in a dimension all of his own making, and throughout all of his work Weinbaum brings the rhythm and hum of nature to a second life on paper and canvas. Borrowing from no one Weinbaum has created distinctive art, in a class all alone.



Past Exhibition - Jean's Blue, May 2007