Artist Statement

I have always claimed the freedom I needed to avoid the boredom of predictability. Mystified by life from an early age, my only consistency has been to express the mystery in whatever aspect it has presented itself to me, in whatever medium I felt drawn to explore - many times developing my own techniques along the way. My paintings, monotypes, mixed media, and digital works mark different passages in my artistic and personal journey.  I invite you to join me: To be with chaos, to negotiate boundaries, to navigate the many textures of the multi-dimensional life we live.

Jon Rife


Though attending college and receiving some institutional training, I consider myself a self-taught intuitive artist. Attracted to representational and figurative artwork in my primitive beginnings, I soon found my genuine interests changing to non-objective contemporary abstraction. An affinity with color, my work soon became expressive, lyrical and poetic. My most recent works are oil and acrylic paintings, mixed media paintings, monotypes, and printmaking from my digital drawings and photography. If you are interested in the process of creating these artworks it is available within the My Work pages.


1961-64 Technical Illustrator, Training Aids Graphics, United States Military,
101st Airborne Division, Fort Campbell, Kentucky.
1964-66 Commercial Television Illustration, Northern California, .
1966-71 Marketing Director and Controller, TCI Cable Television Systems, Northern California Division.

Teaching and Lectures:

1995-12 Various private studio workshops teaching acrylic monotype technique.
1996 ArtSpan Lecture Series, Photographing Your Own Artwork.
1995 Mendocino Art Center, class instruction, the acrylic monotype technique.
1995 ArtSpan Lecture Series, Preparing for Open Studios.
1994 Mendocino Art Center, class instruction, the acrylic monotype technique.

Offices Held with Artist Organizations:

2006-08 Artist Advisory Team, Siskiyou County Arts Counsel
1990-03 President, The Point Printmakers Guild, San Francisco
1993-97 Board of Directors, ArtSpan, San Francisco
1992-96 Artist Advisory Consular, ArtSpan, San Francisco
1980-90 Various Offices on the Board of Directors, The Artist Guild of San Francisco
1979-03 Membership in the Artist Guild of San Francisco


Architectural Digest, May 2005
Dwell, December 2005
Covers: Computer Science Logo Style, Beyond Programming, by Brian Harvey, Published by Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
1997. Computer Science Logo Style, Symbolic Computing, by Brian Harvey, Published by Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
1997.Computer Science Logo Style, Advanced Techniques, by Brian Harvey, Published by Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
1997.Art Connection, A Guide to Fine Art Galleries, Artists and Design Groups.
Artist in Residence, Published by Art Connection, Inc., San Francisco

Selected Notices and Reviews:

1995 Abstract Painting and Modern Jazz, by Steven Wiltse.

Jon Rife is immersed in his medium, inclined towards technical experiments that can be generated by the monotype process. Printed without the aid of a press, his monotypes are rich with detail, texture and intensity of color. Rife is presently teaching his acrylic monotype technique which he invented at the Mendocino Art Center. He has recently introduced computer-generated images into his monotypes, and they often contain cryptic words, phrases and his poetry---or in the case of one piece at the gallery, entire pages of correspondence.