From an early age, Jerry enjoyed expressing himself through drawing and painting. After graduating high school, he was drafted into the US Army where he served for two years. After his term was completed, Jerry received the GI Bill and dedicated the benefits he received towards studying art at Furman University. It was here that he became interested in the figure as a subject for his work. Encouraged by his professors, Jerry received a fellowship at Ohio University where he continued to develop his interest in figure painting and drawing and pursued an increasing interest in non-objective painting. After graduating with an MFA in painting, Jerry began his career as an art professor and artist.

Jerry taught undergraduate and graduate students for more than 40 years. Although he is now retired, Jerry continues to work in his studio and teach a summer workshop at Orkney Springs, a program he has taught and directed for 26 years.

As a result of teaching figure drawing and painting, most of Jerry’s realistic work involves the figure, but he has also created many works that feature non-objective subject matter. As a painter, Jerry’s vocabulary is visual form and thus he sees a strong connection, rather than division, between realistic and non-objective subject matter. The subject matter in his work appeals to the viewer on various levels, but his hope is that the viewer responds to the work on an esthetic, as well as an emotional, level by engaging with the various forms represented. It is Jerry's belief that the forms within the work are the true content of each work.

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