Savitsky, John (Jack) – American Artist

John (Jack) Savitsky (American, 1910 to 1991)

Jack Savitsky, also known as “Coal Miner Jack” is best known for documenting the hard life of the Pennsylvania coal miner in detailed, colorful, almost cheerful paintings, but his subjects ranged wide, from animals to religious scenes. He worked from memory on canvas as well as found materials, his style always illustrative and often warmly humorous. Suffering from black lung disease, Savitsky retired in 1960 and began to draw and paint full-time. His son brought his father’s work to the nearby home of artist and collector Sterling Strauser. Strauser introduced Savitsky’s art to the legendary collector Herbert W. Hemphill Jr., whose interest propelled Savitsky’s work to fame. Today his works are in many well-known collections and museums. These include the Smithsonian American Art Museum, Washington, D.C.; Museum of American Folk Art, New York, NY: Abby Aldridge Rockefeller Collection, Williamsburg, VA; and the Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee, WI.

Information Courtesy of Rago Arts, October, 2019.

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