14 Years ago, my father was diagnosed with late stage cancer. I took the time off from work to bring him into treatment everyday and I was used to being very busy, spending my time productively. It was during those 4 months at Massachusetts General Hospital I began to paint. I was inspired by so many of the people I met, and experiences we had. My father, Michael, passed away after those 4 months, but little did I know that Jonathan the Painter was just getting started. I went back to work in architecture, but it just wasn’t the same. Today I have a studio in the historic, seaside artist community of Rockport, Massachusetts, where I paint what inspires me, and what inspires others - from the salty coastal sunsets to the hometown sports legends, and moments that bring us together.
I am also the Artist in Residence at the Massachusetts General Hospital Cancer Center and Boston Medical Center Cancer Center, bringing my easel, paints, canvases, and positive energy to interact with patients, families, volunteers, nurses and doctors in a meaningful and unexpected way. Through out the day I create a series of colorful paintings and participate in hands on demonstrations for people of all ages, from all over the world, facing the daily challenges of a cancer diagnosis.
For the past 13 years I have also served as a Founder and Executive Director of the Conquer Cancer Coalition of Massachusetts (conquercancer.org), a non-profit I began with my Mother and Brother after Michael passed away. In that time, we have raised over $1 million for support services, programs, and research across the state and across the country. I also had the privilege to help establish and design the Cancer Garden of Hope on Boston City Hall Plaza, working with Mayor Menino and the City of Boston since 2009.
But my biggest accomplishment, and masterpiece, just started elementary school. And I’m lucky because I get to see so much of the good that was in my dad, and so much of what inspires me, in her.