Jon Sarkin

Jon was a former Chiropractor who became an artist in 1989.

His wildly prolific artistic output was created by a condition called “sudden stroke.”

Jon’s distinctive artwork, which draws influence from pop culture, literature, and music, has garnered the attention of art experts and non-experts around the world.

Here’s the gist of what actually happened to make Jon the artist he is today:

In 1988, Jon suddenly developed tinnitus (ringing in the ears), and hyperacusis (over-sensitivity to certain frequencies). This lead to surgery…which lead to a cerebellar hemorrhage…which lead to a stroke. Jon awoke deaf in one ear, his vision splintered, and his balance permanently skewed. Parts of his brain had been sliced and removed.

The neurons that were left made new, different connections. And compulsively creating art has helped Jon recover.

Following his stroke, Jon became obsessed with drawing and eventually returned to practice a couple of days per week.

When we moved to the Northshore of Massachusetts in 1989, I heard of Jon through other doctors who were impressed by his healing techniques.  He was one of the first Chiropractors to use blocks as part of a specialized technique called SOT (Sacro Occipital Technique).

Later that year, I reached out to Jon and we went out to dinner.  I was 23, about to get married and itching to start my practice.  Jon was 36, married with two kids and had just recovered from a life altering event.  We quickly became friends.

Jon was the first person to introduce me to Compuserve and the early world of domain registration.

As a thank you for helping him sell his practice, Jon invited us over for dinner where he gifted me a framed original Chiropractic diploma from 1911.

Before dinner, he insisted on showing me some of his work in his basement.  I was blown away!  The basement was filled with sculptures of the Chrysler building in New York and even a taxi cab door which would light and say the famous line from Taxi Driver.

The next day, I told a patient who was the editor of the local paper about Jon’s incredible art.  He assigned the story and in several weeks there was an amazing multi-page story with pictures about Jon’s artwork in our Sunday paper.