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About Joanna Mersereau


Born in the Midwest, (Illinois), my family and I came west in 1955 because of my husband’s offer of a job at UCR, Riverside, California. I had majored in Industrial Design at the University of Illinois while working for an architect, my first art job.

After moving to Riverside, my husband encouraged me to apply for a staff artist position with the local newspaper, the Press-Enterprise. Armed with my portfolio and pleased that it was a half-time job (two children at home), I applied, was accepted and worked for the paper for ten years.

By that time my free-lance commercial art business had grown and
occupied me full-time, so I left the position at the paper.

Four years later another half-time staff artist position opened up. Same result: I applied, was accepted and worked for the Riverside County Office of Education for 21 years when I took early retirement.

During all this time I had many mentors, some dead (Diego Rivera, Van Gogh, Cezanne) and some living. My most influential teacher and friend was Milford Zornes, in workshops from 1969 until his death in 2008. Don O’Neill was my painting companion for 30 years. Working half-time meant that I could pursue art while still connecting with my family.

So, in my long art career, I have had only three official paycheck jobs. How fortunate I’ve been to “work” in what has been my lifelong passion—Art!



Studio - Gallery
1251 E. Lugonia Ave. #37
Redlands, CA 92374



Selected Biography