UNITED STATES, 1941 – 2020
Asheville’s most well-known painter has died. Jonas Gerard was an icon of the River Arts District, where he had a thriving gallery and studio since moving to Asheville from Florida in 2006. Gerard died Friday morning at age 79. His large, abstract paintings were a top draw for tourists, and Gerard continued hosting live painting-performance sessions for visitors well into his late 70s, until just a few months before his health declined and he went into hospice care. Gerard’s paintings were exhibited at the Asheville Airport and sought by collectors around the world. He added a second gallery in the River Arts District in 2013. Gerard was married three times and is survived by a daughter, Mira Gerard, also a working artist. His galleries are closed Friday to honor his passing, but will continue exhibiting and selling his work.