John N. Colt
John Colt was born in Madison, Wisconsin and was surrounded by art at an early age. His father began a painting school and taught summer courses in northern Wisconsin. As many young men of his age, he enlisted in the Navy during WWII, working as an electrician. Afterwards, he returned to his hometown and earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Like his father, he began teaching in small area schools, followed by the Layton School of Art, and eventually landing at University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. From 1957-1990, he inspired young artists as well as continuing to paint. He enjoyed studying the small micro organisms and creatures that made up our ecosystem. For his own development, he traveled to different regions, including the west coast, Haiti, and the Bahamas and studied sea creatures, insects, flowers, and produce.
He was exhibited in several exhibitions throughout the world. Ruth Kjear, his life partner and main supporter, connected with Kohler Foundation to he expand his works to permanent collections. KFI has gifted his works to major institutions such as the Museum of Wisconsin Art, Lawrence University, Cedarburg Art Museum, Lakeland University, Miller Art Museum, Racine Art Museum, Ripon College, Wright Museum of Art, St. Norbert College, Carroll University, UW-Milwaukee, Muskegon Museum of Art, Marian University, and UW-Green Bay. Conservation work has been completed by Parma Conservation, Chicago.