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  • Writer's pictureLynne Kornecki

Local Abstract Artist Thrives on Fusing Disparate Elements with Stunning Asian-Flair Results


"MOONLIGHT EMBRACE" by Jan Schrader; Scroll down to see more of Jan's work...


Like a highly skilled chef, Naperville, IL abstract artist Jan Schrader deftly mixes his visual artistry into a tasteful fusion by adding Asian flair. Preferring acrylics as his go-to medium, Jan’s airy, clean, contemporary canvases feature a powerful use of open space, texture and metallic paint that dims and brightens with the passing sun. The ultimate result is a piece that is distinctive and full of vitality.


Asian influence has been a part of his life dating back to childhood from décor his mother used in his family’s home to later serving in the U.S. Marine Corps stationed in Hong Kong and the Philippines.


Jan notes there are two major muses behind his work – contemporary architecture, such as Mid-Century Modern, and the clean lines of Asian artistry.


“During my military years serving in the Far East I experienced that culture firsthand,” Jan reflects. “Asian art is frequently very simplistic – often with Zen-like minimalism. Ultimately, that fusion of art and architecture fuels my designs.”  


And as a devoted jazz fan, he listens to it regularly while painting in his studio finding even more inspiration in the music's improvisations and riffs.


“To me, abstract art is jazz on canvas where I improvise my own work as I go along,” he says.

He often begins his paintings with minimal planning using a palette knife or brush to develop heavy textures with metallic and high gloss paints.


Additionally, his work contains elements of incongruity, asymmetry or something unexpected. Combining dissimilar touches such as a geometric shape with a bit of free-form Asian flair, he believes, creates interest, movement, and invites viewer speculation about the artist’s intentions.


Surprisingly, Jan has only been concentrating seriously on painting for the last three years. He never studied art in school or took painting lessons. He jokes that he has a basement full of bad art, but once he sold his first painting, he suddenly felt his efforts were validated.


Asked “When did you first realize you had art talent?” He offers this amusing response. “I still haven’t realized it – I’m just playing!”


Playing or not, Jan has clearly rustled-up the perfect visual recipe for his own noteworthy compositions -- riffs included!  



"MEMORIES OF HONG KONG"

"SUDDEN CHANGE OF DIRECTION"

"HOLDING ON"


"THE LAST GOLD LEAF"

"INTERSECTIONS"


"CONTRADICTION"



The artist, JAN SCHRADER, posing with "MOONLIGHT EMBRACE"


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