Darell Koons (1924-2016 )

"Winter Barn, Scranton" (acrylic) 22-1/2" x 45-1/2"

Darell Koons born in Albion, Michigan, in 1924, spent most of his childhood in the Albion-Homer area of Southern Michigan. He graduated from Homer Community Schools in 1946. After receiving his B.A. degree in Art Education from Bob Jones University, Greenville, S.C., he returned to Michigan to teach at his high school alma mater while pursuing graduate work at Western Michigan University. Upon completion of his M.A. degree in Art Education in 1955, he returned to Bob Jones University where he remained until his retirement in 1995.

Koons has had over 40 one-man exhibitions, including the University of South Carolina; Wake Forest University; Mint Museum, Charlotte, N.C.; Columbus Museum, Columbus, Ga.; the Washington County Museum of Art, Hagertown, Maryland; and the Jesse Besser Museum, Alpena, Michigan. He has exhibited in regional and national competitions and has won numerous awards. Some of the more than 100 group exhibitions include the Mead Paper Exhibition, Atlanta; the Hunter Annuals, Chattanooga; Southeastern Annuals, Atlanta; Society of Four Museums, Palm Beach; Cushing Gallery, Dallas; Isaac Delgado Museum, New Orleans; Springfield Museum, Springfield, Mass.; and the Kenilworth Galleries, Birmingham and Detroit.

Over 2500 paintings have been completed by the artist. Many are in public collections: The Gibbes Museum, Charleston, S.C.; The Greenville County Museum of Art, Greenville, S.C.; The South Carolina State Art Collection; the Governor's Mansion, Columbia, S.C.; The Mint Museum, Charlotte, N.C.; The Butler Museum of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio; Eastern Michigan University; and the Indonesian Embassy.

Although Darell Koons' style appears representational, his fundamental objective is to isolate the raw material of geometric forms in the rural American landscape and translate it into a controlled arrangement of formal design. With an absolutely clear vision, Koons continues to evolve the precise, sharp-edged barns and farm houses which have made him the most readily recognized artist within the state.

Jack Morris, Contemporary Artists of S. C., 1970

I use a direct approach in my painting. Some artists make numerous sketches prior to the actual paint. I believe that is time consuming and the freshness of the painting might be lost when using this approach.

Composition is important, including the arrangement of buildings, trees, clouds and other subject matter. These may be changed, moved or eliminated completely when compared with the actual scene. Many believe I try to duplicate nature. Actually, I try to simplify my subjects, sometimes to their purest shape or form. An artist must know something about his subject, or he will surely have difficulty painting it. I believe my experience as a child and youth living in rural Michigan has given me knowledge of my subjects, thus, the opportunity to record this passing history of Americana.

Darell Koons, artist statement