Donald Zolan, Artist, DONALD ZOLAN STUDIO
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This profile was last updated on 7/15/07 and contains information from public web pages.
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Artist

Local Address: Ridgefield, Connecticut, United States
DONALD ZOLAN STUDIO
 
Background

Employment History

62 Total References
Web References
Licensing Partners
www.radioflyer.com, 13 May 2001 [cached]
Radio Flyer Moments by Donald ZolanFine arts posters.800.677.6947
Penguin Putnam, Inc.http://www.penguinputnam.com/Radio Flyer children's books.
Donald ...
www.zolan.com, 23 Mar 2015 [cached]
Donald Zolan
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Donald Zolan
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The first time you meet Donald Zolan, you have the feeling of meeting an old friend whom you just haven't seen for awhile. His warmth, candor and interest in others can disguise the fact that he's one of our nation's most talented and popular children's artists. The love and joy you see in his paintings are a sincere expression of himself.
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Donald James Zolan was born on August 11, 1937 in a little bungalow on Prairie Avenue in the small village of Brookfield, Illinois a working class suburb near Chicago. He was the youngest child of James and Margaret Zolan. Donald came from very humble beginnings sharing a bedroom in the attic with his brother and his Uncle Lester.
In greeting someone for the first time, Donald always started by saying, "Hi, I am Donald Zolan, an Artist, a humble Artist from Illinois.
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This site is dedicated to Donald James Zolan, a Great American Painter, who will be forever remembered as the Humble Artist from Brookfield, Illinois. Requiescat in Pace.
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Born into a family legacy of five generations of artists and sculptors, Zolan's oil paintings spanned the world of both fine art and commercial licensing. With original oil paintings selling in the five digits, and collectibles and licensed products selling worldwide, his art continues to speak to millions of collectors.
A child prodigy, Zolan began drawing and painting at the age of three winning his first scholarship in oils to the Art Institute of Chicago at the age of thirteen. Upon graduation from high school, he won a full scholarship to the American Academy of Fine Art in Chicago completing the Academy's four-year program in just two years. He apprenticed under Haddon Sundblom, the well-known illustrator of the Coca Cola Santa Claus and later attended the Arts Students League in New York City.
Upon graduation from the Academy, Zolan pursued a fine arts career exhibiting and selling his oil paintings at shows and museums throughout North America, Europe, United Kingdom and Japan winning numerous fine art awards including best of show by the Salmagundi Club in New York. His successful fine art career led to the opening of the Zolan Gallery on Nantucket Island. By the mid 1970's, as Zolan's name and reputation in the fine art world flourished, his portrait commissions expanded to include political leaders, writers, religious figures, astronauts and industrialists from around the world.
By 1978, Zolan's fresh new style of children paintings launched his career in the collectibles and licensing world. His incredible talent to portray the joyfulness, innocence, tenderness and wide eyed wonder of early childhood propelled him to the top of the collectibles industry while his works commanded some of the highest secondary market values.
Voted America's Favorite Living Plate Artist for seven consecutive years, Zolan also won more individual artist's awards in the annual Collector Editions Magazine's Awards of Excellence than any another artist.
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Zolan can be seen as carrying John Singer Sargent's legacy of American Impressionism into the late 20th century."
Zolan had the exceptional ability to adapt his artwork to the changing times while maintaining his classical unique style known today as the Zolan brand. The wholesomeness of his subject matter combined with his Americana style became an ideal partnership with some of America's iconic corporate brands.
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Born in Brookfield, IL in 1937 to middle class parents, Zolan embodied the values of the Heartland of honesty, humility, and straightforwardness. What he captured in his oil paintings was the pure, honest, and open expression of his heart. A compassionate and kind man, an insightful and positive man, and a dedicated artist his entire life, there was no distance between what he portrayed and how he lived his life.
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Painted in oils at the age of 15, Donald's copy of Rembrandt's Father
Donald Zolan's vision for his art was that one day it could make a positive change in the lives of children. This art is a reflection of the life we can all strive to create again for our children. It is a dream that can one day be a possible reality for so many. Let's give hope to a dream.
"All my paintings reawaken moments of my own wonderful childhood in the small mid western town of Brookfield, Illinois that I never want to forget."Donald Zolan
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Donald Zolan
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an interview with Donald Zolan
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by Donald Zolan (recorded by Zolan in 2007)
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Don is a man of unusual talent, however, I am impressed by his excellent personal character.
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Fifty years later, Zolan continued to be inspired and influenced by his apprenticeship. Zolan recalled years later, " Haddon inspired me to create and to think big and to believe in my work. That was his greatest gift to me the rest of my life."
In 2007, Zolan created his own Santa Claus collection.
"There is only one way to do something and that is the Right way." Donald Zolan, everyday life
"I continually rediscover the innocent and curious child inside me. And, I find that I never stop discovering the joys of life." Donald Zolan
"I am a humble artist with a burning passion to create day and night. I recognize my responsibility as an artist to Society to create works that can profoundly impact a person's daily life but most importantly the life of a child." Donald Zolan
"I am guided by Faith and inspired by Creativity and I have always known that God has blessed me with this wonderful gift therefore Faith and Spirituality are synonymous with my work." Donald Zolan
Donald Zolan The ...
www.licensing.org, 1 Dec 2010 [cached]
Donald Zolan The Zolan Company, LLC Artist
People - Children artwork at Art 4 Display
www.art4display.com, 19 June 2010 [cached]
Clean and Shiney by Donald Zolan
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Tractor Ride by Donald Zolan
Reinventing the Music Box - Cottage Garden - Zolan Fine Art
www.cgcollections.com, 24 Dec 2010 [cached]
The first time you meet Donald Zolan, you have the feeling of meeting an old friend whom you just haven't seen for awhile. His warmth, candor and interest in others can disguise the fact that he's one of our nation's most talented and popular artists. A very positive and forward-looking man, he's at peace with himself and his world. A fifth generation artist, Zolan began drawing at age three, and, by age five, was working in watercolors and winning local competitions. He won his first major art competition at age thirteen and was awarded a scholarship to the prestigious Art Institute of Chicago. By sixteen, he won a scholarship to Chicago's American Academy of Art. Full-time formal training began after high school with a full scholarship to the American Academy of Fine Art. Upon graduation, he was selected to apprentice with Haddon Sundbloom, a famous illustrator most known for his Coca-Cola Santa Claus. Zolan moved into the field of commercial art, where he was a great success over the next twelve years. His true love, however, was his fine art paintings which were shown in leading galleries and museums around the world. Finally, he established his own gallery in Nantucket. His devotion to capturing the magical moments of childhood reflect on Zolan's own happy childhood in Brookfield, Illinois. His parents fully supported and nurtured their son's talent, and, by his own admission, Zolan had an idyllic childhood in America's heartland. In his own words, Zolan expresses his love of children, "I love little children-the way their eyes light up with excitement as they awaken to the world around them. It's a marvelous time of life, filled with wonderment. A time when each new discovery is another magical moment." This love and joy is reflected in his works. The unique combination of a subject matter so close to his heart and incredible talent, nurtured through technical training and years of experience, make Zolan's paintings among the most popular in the world.
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