John McLaughlin was born in Sharon, Massachusetts in 1898. He was a part-time painter even while he worked as a dealer in Japanese prints and as a translator during World War II in Japan, China and Burma. He lived in Japan in the 1930s and served as a Marine Corps language officer. He and his wife lived in Dana Point, California where he, a self-taught artist, started his painting career at the age of forty-eight.
McLaughlin’s experience in the Far East and his growing knowledge of European abstract art led him to a non-objective, quiet form of art. He is known primarily for his hard-edged, geometric style of painting. He concentrated on color and form to create a neutral image devoid of subject. His paintings are understated and self-sufficient in that they do not have a relationship to one another, they exist entirely alone.
McLaughlin died in Dana Point, California in 1976.
Art in America, September 1997
Compiled and written by Jean Ershler Schatz, artist and researcher of Laguna Woods, California.
Biography from the Archives of AskART.