was born in St. Louis, MO, but didn’t spend much time there. His father was an aerospace engineer for McDonnell Douglas (which is now known as Boeing.)
The family moved a lot and by the time he was 12, he had already lived in St. Louis, MO, Tustin, CA, Boise, ID, and South Carolina, as well as Japan and Athens, Greece. As a young adult, he later lived with his family in several different places within the state of California.
John Brophy first started painting just after he finished high school. He had been a yearbook photographer and had enjoyed taking photos, but felt a need for something more and thus, picked up oil painting.
When his dad was transferred to Zaragoza, Spain, he took the opportunity to go to a university in Madrid. That’s where he studied fine art, taking full advantage of the Prado Museum and the wonderful courses that he could absorb.
Soon after, he left home, he moved back to Japan for about 8 years.He ultimately decided to nest in Issaquah, WA. Though he has endured much travel, John Brophy is thankful for the experiences he gained.With a very well-marked passport, he feels that he cannot quite say where his inspiration comes from and that it springs from many places and experiences. Some artists have a hard time with coming up with ideas, but John Brophy is happy to say he is not one of them.
When John Brophy was new to painting he idolized Salvador Dali and found that he could think up all kinds of Daliesque compositions. However, it was something that bothered him because even though the ideas were good, they were in someone else’s style. It took him a while to realize why he was rendering his work in someone else’s style, and ultimately he realized that it was because successful artists have done the hard work of developing their own styles and visual vocabulary.
The styles of the most successful artists were contagious to the point where that particular artist could engulf themselves in anyone’s style of painting. As he stated “It is easy to move into a beautiful house that has been built by someone else.” Taking this into consideration, John Brophy, found it necessary to stop looking at works of other great artists and build up his own inventory of visual iconography.
John Brophy’s biggest influences are Salvador Dali, Mark Kostabi, Pierre et Gilles, Tadanori Yokoo, the music and writing of Brian Eno, Haruki Murajami, and one of his first art teachers: John Fitzgerald. Fitzgerald’s temperament and gentle insight helped tune John Brophy’s eye and sharpen his creative instincts.
John Brophy considers his work to be for the viewer to name, he doesn’t place stylistic labels on his art. As John likes to state:
“I just do my art and leave it up to others, who come later, to worry about [it].”
If you’re interested in following John Brophy and his enigmatic artwork Please contact:
John Brophy’s Personal website: