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J. Bardin (1923-1997) Biographical Essay
9 April 1984

Essay delivered, 9 April 1984, by artist J. Bardin (1923-1997), at a meeting of the Loblolly Society, Columbia, provides information about his early training as an artist and comments upon his teachers at the University of South Carolina—"Prof. Ed Yaghjian was my first instructor. He taught all the studio courses. The art department faculty was few in number but choice. Catherine Rembert was a leading light. Her courses in color theory and design were always inspired and excellent. They would be valid today. Augusta Rembert Wittkowsky...taught art history. I learned the past can be a source of inspiration and there were many places I must see. All faculty members traveled or went away for their own creative work and renewal during the summer. It made a definite imprint on my ideas. Soon we all became friends and years later neighbors. I have been most fortunate to have such people as friends for the long stretch."

He also mentions two classmates who were "destined for professional careers that developed along very different roads," cartoonist and illustrator Jack Smyrl and "father of Pop Art" Jasper Johns. Both Bardin and Johns wound up studying in New York at the same time in the early 1950s—"Jap [Jasper Johns] and I enjoyed seeing each other in the city. We went to galleries and museums, out for drink and food, on weekends as we soon had jobs for survival. He had to go into the service. I moved into his living quarters which were a bit larger than mine and near the ASL [Art Students League]. Lincoln Center now occupies our old living section."

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