John Sevcik attended the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts evening school for two years, and then enrolled in the four year certificate program, graduating in painting. He was awarded prizes for painting and drawing, both in school and since. His work has appeared in the periodical New American Paintings (numbers 21 and 45). For a number of years he worked in a barn studio near Valley Forge Park, before relocating to Philadelphia, where he lives with his wife Lynne Campbell. He has traveled in Europe a number of times, and in the U.S. to Maine, Martha’s Vineyard, Seattle, New York, and the New Jersey coast. He also has a B.A. in English Literature from Villanova University, where he originally went to study Astronomy. As a result, there are many influences to draw on when he paints, from his most personal memories to the cosmic inspirations of nature.
In his oil paintings, John explores certain evocative states created by the energy and expression of painted images. These paintings are taken from dreams, sketchbooks, plein-air sessions, or chance re-paintings over other images. The ideals of Ryder and Inness – to express something behind the painting – are his goals. As a result, the development of each painting is an ongoing mystery that lingers in the finished work. A balance of enigma and meaning are the equipoise he seeks, and this reflects his philosophy of life.
In a personal way the paintings allow him to grapple with the tumultuous experience of his family’s history. Images of small craft on high seas, of dogs returning through the snow to get help for skiers, of frog-spirits surprised by goldfish in a pond, are all emblematic of an unsettled life that tries to dwell in poetry, or the fixed state of a painting. It is not surprising that John has also written poetry and stage plays, which have been published and performed. He has recently become interested in writing on art, beginning with the art of his friends.