Sculptor, painter, letter cutter, stained glass artist, novelist, travel writer, academic and administrator; Jonah Jones (1919-2004) was a twentieth century renaissance man.
Born near Newcastle into a family of miners he became a librarian before reluctantly volunteering for a non-combatant role in the Medical Corps during he second world war. He saw action in North Africa but also met a number of artists and craftsmen in the RAMC who fired his own passion to become an artist. After the war, now married and having survived severe case of TB he settled in his family’s homeland of Wales and began his ‘on the job’ education as a sculptor and letter cutter. Much of his early work was at Clough Williams-Ellis’s Portmeirion villages. The two became close friends and Jones widened his circle to include Richard Hughes, Bertrand Russell, John Cowper Powys and Huw Wheldon.
In a varied career Jonah Jones produced intimate sculptures, monumental installations, and beautiful inscriptions, in addition to writing novels published by leading London houses, a biography of Clough Williams-Ellis and a hugely regarded survey of the lakes of North Wales.