His presence is colorful and charming, like his paintings. My favorite of these is one I saw large and life size at The Gibbes Museum. It is called Seeking. It is now at Mepkin Abbey.
Born in the small Gullah community of Gardens Corner, South Carolina, the area is rich with history. It is on the beautiful drive down US Hwy 17 on the way to Savannah. Jonathan Green was educated at the Art Institute of Chicago and began a slow and steady rise in Chicago’s arts world. He has in the last few years returned to the south, and works from his studio on Daniel Island. Chuma Gallery in Charleston also carries his work. And look for it in the new inside Market downtown.Green was raised by his maternal grandmother after being born to his unmarried mother, who was excommunicated from her church because of her marital status.
In beautiful interviews by The History Makers online, he recalls a sense of alienation in his youth. Using those feelings of apartness, as a child Green began to use it to fuel his art. In these interviews Green also richly details Gullah life and language and some history of South Carolina. “Artist and painter, Jonathan Green recalls friendships with the Chicago’s movers and shakers and how they supported his art…(he) discusses the inspiration behind his works, the Gullah and Cubist influences, and also discusses his patron and later, boyfriend, Richard Weedman and his influence on his career. Green also details that creating art is also maintining a business and shares how that goal is achieved. Artist and painter, Jonathan Green shares his hopes of racial unity and hopes his body of work is representative of his legacy.”