Ronald Young, St. Louis Member Since January 2010 Artist Statement From the detailed close-ups of musicians holding their instruments, to the emphasis placed on the facial expression ot the trumpet player with perched lips, to the drummer and bassist playing the back beat in the shadows, one can feel the rhythm that unites the visual culture of art with the pulsating beat of music represented in the unique art work of Ron Young. Upon a closer look, the themes of his latest paintings reveal a great deal about Ron’s life and passions. Ron Young is a talented artist who works with oils, acrylics and mixed-media collage / assemblage. (He also creates illustrations and computer graphics). Ron’s paintings combine bold use of color harmonies and strong compositional design with meticulous attention to detail to create visually rhythmic art work. Though his paintings are both realistic and figurative, Ron’s collage /assemblage work is more expressive and symbolic - utilizing photographs, decorative paper and a variety of found objects. Taken as a whole, Ron Young’s art demonstrates total mastery of technique to create a genuinely original body of work. Originally from St. Louis, Missouri, Ron demonstrated exceptional artistic ability at an early age, attending the St. Louis Public Schools Honor’s Art Program while in high school. During this period he also began painting murals, a practice he continues. Ron later went on to receive a B.A. in Art Education from Clark/Atlanta University and an M.A. in Communications from Webster University. As an artist and an educator Ron has an ongoing interest in becoming a better artist, both through travel and academic training. One such opportunity came in the early 90’s when he apprenticed as a sign painter, painting billboards at 3M Media. The concentration on technique and the mastery of materials that Ron acquired while at 3M would be difficult to reproduce in any other learning environment. They made a lasting impression on the aesthetics and scale of his artwork. Recently, Ron participated in The Japan Fulbright Memorial Fund Scholarship Program. JFMF annually provides American teachers with opportunities for professional development through short-term (3 weeks) study visits to Japan. In Japan Ron interacted with artists, students and teachers gaining firsthand knowledge of Japanese art and culture. He was particularly impressed with the simplicity of design often applied to Japanese art, yet fascinated with their intricate use of patterns and bold application of vivid colors. The culmination of Ron’s artistic training and his academic opportunities, most recently his Japanese art and cultural exposure, has had a profound affect on his current body of work. Ron Young is presently concentrating his efforts within two portfolios of work - “Jazz Icons”, dedicated to pioneering jazz musicians from the bebop, post bebop, avante guard and jazz fusion eras. And “The Legends Series”, which celebrates legendary African American rhythm and blues, soul, funk and rock n roll entertainers. Ron promises that paintings from both “Jazz Icons” and “The Legends Series” will continue to push the boundaries of creativity with powerful compositional components that are artistically energetic, as well as stimulating to the eye and the mind.