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I’ve lived in the Berkshires since 2007.  I was born in Central Massachusetts, went to college in Maine, and have traveled extensively, often on foot, throughout the northeast. During my years at Bates College, I studied chemistry, math, archaeology, and art history, ultimately earning my degree in classical music composition.

I’m often described as a “renaissance man.” I was front man and one of the primary songwriters for the local band Bell Engine. I’ve also recorded my own, very personal album, All Beneath Our Train. I continue to sing and write songs. I’ve also written more than 60 short stories about my years jumping freight trains, and more recently, after the birth of my son Orrin, have begun writing poems for children.

As a visual artist, I work with many media. Oil paints, pastels, and pencil were my main tools for many years. A series of fifteen large pieces were displayed in the Latchis Theatre in Brattleboro, Vermont in 2007. They were inspired by a neoclassical piece of music called Alina by the Estonian composer Arvo Part. The Alina series exemplifies my style and use of color, line, and shape. In an article in the on-line journal Rural Intelligence, associate editor Nichole Dupont called me a “multimedia abstract master.” I’m also a photographer. This website focuses on that.

John Clarke, Berkshires Artist

In 2002 I stumbled upon an intriguing art form by scanning actual pressed flowers through a now outdated color printer. The results, what I called Flower, Stain, and Fingerprint, were a novel type of botanical illustration, incredibly beautiful and unique, and cannot be recreated, as newer printers do not produce the same effects. Of perhaps a thousand different prints, I only have several dozen left.

My work has been shown at the Geoff Young Gallery, Art on Main at Barnbrook, the Joyce Goldstein Gallery, the Isha Nelson Gallery, Deb Koffman’s Little Gallery, and Sohn Fine Art, where I am currently represented. I was the featured artist in the April, 2011 issue of The Artful Mind.

I love collecting fossils, rocks and minerals. I’ve travelled extensively throughout the country, even moving to Pennsylvania for a time specifically to collect fern fossils and quartz crystals. I always keep an eye to the ground, and as a result, my home resembles a natural history museum. The natural beauty and wonder these objects provide have been a great inspiration to me, and I have offered several workshops about these captivating objects.

I currently live in North Egremont with Liz Hogan and our two children Orrin and Maris. We don’t yet have a dog.

photo by Liz Hogan

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