Born in Berlin. Studied at the University of Berlin and at the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris in the studio of Max Backman. In the late 1920's he joined a circle of young painters around Andre Derain in Paris. In 1936, he immigrated to Eretz Israel, and spent many years as a kibbutz member at Gan Shmuel.
Simon was kind of a vagabond artist, he traveled all around the worls throughout his adult life, mainly in south and North America and Europe. No doubt that the scenery changes were a great influence on Simon's work; his early work usually describing the Kibbutz' life and people. in his late work, after he visited South America, Yohanan Simon freed himself from the social realism and became more abstract and colorful. His work was influenced by the Fauvism of Lager, Derain and Diego Rivera.
- Tali Tamir, Yohanan Simon: Dual Portrait, 2001, exhibition catalogue, Tel Aviv
for further reading:
- Gideon Ofrat, Yohanan Simon: Monograph, 1999, exhibition catalogue, Tel Aviv
- Zvi Zohar, Yohanan Simon: His Way in Art, 1968, Poalim Publishing, Tel Aviv
Original works and lithographs by Yochanan Simon can be found at the Engel Galleries Israeli art collection.