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John Koch (1909-1978)

Aliases: John (1909) Koch

Professions: Painter

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  • John Koch (1909-1978)

  • John Koch (1909-1978)

  • John Koch 1910-1978 , Shop Windows, Night oil on canvas

  • John Koch (1909-1978)

John Koch Biography

(b Toledo, Ohio 1909; d New York 1978) American painter. John Koch was a successful portraitist and genre painter in a world dominated by abstraction. He used his apartment on Central Park West as the backdrop for his subjects, whether figurative or still life. A common theme of Koch's best works is the connection between his subjects. Koch returned to the theme of artist and model throughout his career, using himself or fellow painters as subjects. There is no abstraction in Koch's compositions, yet they are not accurate mirrors of reality, rather they are idealized versions that conform to Koch's fancy. Koch's use of light and atmosphere are reminiscent of the Old Masters, particularly Jan Vermeer, whom he admired and many of whom were represented in his own collection. Differing from the Masters, Koch uses not only natural light sources but also artificial. Koch's talent of interpreting the effects of light onto surfaces adds to the heightened drama of his scenes. (Credit: Christie’s, New York, American Paintings, December 1, 2005, Lot 137)

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