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A Short Biography

John De Moss was born August 19, 1939 in South Central Los Angeles in California. He attended schools in Los Angeles, Hollywood, Pasadena, and Norwalk California. In 1956 he went into the United States Navy where he served two tours.

Mr. De Moss developed an interest in becoming an artist while he was in Japan during his first Far East Cruise in 1957. Seeking help from various artists in Japan and later in San Francisco, he started learning to draw in charcoal and paint in oils. He sold his first painting while in Japan in 1958. He continued to learn his craft with the generous help of many different artists, by visits to museums and art galleries, and by reading art books. After leaving the U.S. Navy Mr. De Moss pursued a career as an artist.

During the period 1959 through 1980 Mr. De Moss exhibited paintings and drawings in both galleries and private showings in San Francisco, Ca., Los Angeles, Ca., Santa Barbara, Ca., Shaker Heights, Oh., Coconut Grove, Fl., Palm Beach, Fl., Norfolk, Va., Washington D.C., New Hope, Pa., Princeton, N.J., New York, N.Y., Houston, Tx., Copenhagen, Denmark, and Venice, Italy. 

Mr. De Moss sold mostly charcoal drawings during the period 1957 through 1966 and then from 1966 through 1979 his main output became oil paintings.

Mr. De Moss entered the University of Houston in 1980.  He transferred to the University of Texas at Austin in the fall of 1981.  He received a B.A. in Anthropology in the fall of 1983 and then earned his M.A. in Philosophical Anthropology in August 1985.  His Master's thesis was titled:  A Non-Essential Hermeneutical Approach to the Study of Myth.  Mr. De Moss entered candidacy for a Ph. D. in Molecular  Anthropology at the end of the spring semester in 1989.  His dissertation work was  on the evolutionary systematics of Circopithecines (a group of Old World Monkeys from Africa). He attempted to developed an evolutionary history of these monkeys by sequencing the DNA bases from parts of their nuclear and mitochondrial ribosome genes. During this period (1980 through 1994) Mr. De Moss completed no paintings.

Mr. De Moss started painting again in 1995.  The majority of drawings and paintings produced by Mr. De Moss have, in the past, been classified by others as belonging to the schools of Symbolism, Surrealism, California Illusionism, or Magic Realism.  He considers his art to be PostModern Symbolism.



After nearly 50 years as a student of art and of life, I have many people to thank for the advice, aid, and comfort they have given me along the way. My memory for names is not as good as it once was, but then again I have never been very good at remembering names anyway as anyone who knows me can attest. The list below will be quite incomplete and for that I am sorry. The names are listed in a somewhat chronological order starting in the 1950's and ending in 2005. Anyone who has become too famous is not listed so this doesn't seem like a "name dropping list.".

But first, a very special "thank you" must go to Theodore A. Carlos who has been a stalwart and unflinching friend, patron, and business partner for the last 30 years. Also to the late R. Perry Zarska who was my business manager as well as my best friend and confidant for 18 years. And to Dr. Michael D. Fischer whose intellectual curiosity and honesty have been a source of inspiration to me for the past twenty years and whose friendship has been an added prize that I cherish greatly. And to Michael Fry who photographed all of the work seen on this site and whose is also a good friend and confidant.
Also I would be remiss not to mention my special thanks to two of my most ardent patrons the late Melinda Gail Axel and Simon Kearsley for their considerable help and generosity.

Glenn C. Ward
David Dean
Adrienne Killian-Moseley
Billy Compton
Ron Everett
Lisa Price
Jim Skea
Chris Johnson
Michael Long
Joe Crumb ("Cliche")
Glyn Mertaugh
Roger Rose
Judi Hufnell
Roger Ashford
Jan Piet Van Vlaanderen ("Skeeter")
Dwight Deere Carter
Nick Fennerty
Jib Ellis
Luke Lewis
David Finney
Lydia Brickley
Nora Lewis
Marc Miller
Steve Geiger
George Rossi
Sam Mehlman
Michael Cook
David Notarius
Joe Aneskavich
Phil Hemley
Nancy Margorum
Chuck Kerr
Robin Perlman Schneider
Todd Carlos
Marlon Porter
Charlie Adams
Kristina Andriana Koutsoudas
John Slate ("Johnny Rat")
Carol Smith
Karen Copeland
David Wilson
Tony Young

Robert Ludlow
Carl Klokkevold
Nancy Townsend
Chester Emery
Glenn Sherman
Earl P. Ledwell
Bertram Alfred Damewood III ("Beetle")
Richard Lee
Susie Wong
Robert Woodward ("Woody")
Fred Gansemeir
Lois Gansemeir
Henry "Hank" Rinkov
Peter Paul Davis
Phillip Archambault
Jai Barnes
Jerry Allen Burns ("Lil Al")
Art Coogan
Richard Johnson (Ricky)
Tom Johnson
Ron Johnson
Paul Weiss (White Indigo)
Sharon Fox
Foster Folsom
Lee Arnold
Renny Davis
L. B. Vocelle ("Bucky")
Bobby Gilbert
Barbara Beyer ("Saudie")
H. William Simmington (Bill)
George Seymore
Susan Rafferty Kerwick
Peggy Axel
Andy Ward
Jan (Palmer) Ward
Adam Ward
John Larsen
Dana Chandler
Bruce Lane
Bart St. John Terrell
Norman Garnier
Judi Wagner
Lisa Jefferson
Simeon G. Gallu