June Wayne

Born in 1918 in Chicago, June Wayne was a precocious artist leaving school at age 15 to become an artist. Just two years later she held the first exhibition of her watercolor paintings. She was attracted to the emerging contemporary art world of Los Angeles during World War Two and as a way of finding new ways of creation she was convinced to try stone lithography in the summer of 1948 working with master printer Lynton Kistler who had just opened up his print workshop near her studio. Within just a few months she embraced and quickly mastered the medium which became a primary artistic medium for her entire career.

In 1958 June Wayne embarked on the production of a Deluxe Book illustrating the songs and sonets of John Donne with fifteen lithographs, working with master printmaker Marcel Durassier in Paris. Prior to her travel to France, she had been negotiating with the Ford Foundation to fund a print workshop in the United States with the goal of not only attracting artists to the medium of stone lithography but also training fine art lithographic printers which were almost non existent outside Paris. She returned from Paris with a completed John Donne Deluxe Book illustrated with stunning and impressive lithographs. Within the year the Tamarind Lithography Institute was funded catalyzing decades of fine art lithography creation and the training of numerous lithographic printers (that continues to this day). Many of these Tamarind trained printers started their own print workshops or were employed in printing fine art lithography all over the United States.

Wayne directed the Tamarind Lithography Institute in Los Angeles for 10 years and despite a heavy administrative workload, produced 35 of her own lithographs. After achieving her goal of attracting artists to lithography and training a core of master printers, the Tamarind moved to New Mexico under the direction of fellow printmaker and friend Clinton Adams. She was now free to concentrate on her own lithography and other media at her studio and workshop, inviting numerous artists and printers to create and print lithographs with her in Los Angeles.

Wayne's dedication to lithography was unparalleled and was one of very few artists who devoted large portions of their career to the medium of lithography producing consistent, high quality and innovative works. Her good friend Francoise Gilot was another. Her graphic works are highly sought after to this day.