A brief history of John and Jane Weaver:  about them as a couple, their art individually and how it complements each other.

John and Jane Weaver

The Classical work of John Weaver [1930-2018] complemented by
the figurative work of Jane Weaver

Jane Weaver's life

Jane Weaver studied art at Wolverhampton and Birmingham art colleges for her degree and post graduate teaching qualifications.  Following this, she won second prize in the Giles Bequest Competition organised by the Victoria and Albert Museum where her print is still in the permanent collection.

On their arrival to Brighton, she furthered her post graduate studies at Brighton Art College under Harvey Daniels studying print making and litho printing.

Whilst continuing her litho printing and painting, she has taught art for over 50 years, but chose to teach art mainly in adult education due to her favouring serious art, which for her worked better with adults.

She was fairly well known on the Brighton art world in those days as she used to organise exhibitions, especially, a very democratic exhibition she ran for many years in which any artist from all over Brighton and Hove could exhibit their work at the Friends Centre in Brighton.  Her husband John supported her with this and amongst other things, hung  hundreds of their exhibitor’s paintings.  In addition, she has also led, along with two collegues, annual painting holidays on the continent for students over the last 40 years whilst continuing to paint and litho print.

John Weaver life

John and Jane Weaver met at Wolverhampton Art College over 60 years ago, married and moved down to their much loved Brunswick Square in Brighton and Hove on the south coast of England as John Weaver had been offered a job on the local Newspaper – the Argus. 

John Weaver studied at Wolverhampton Art College where he met his wife to be Jane Scholes
.  When he first met her he said, ‘I’ll marry that girl’ as she was the first girl who could equal his intellectual understanding of art, literature and philosophy.  Following their move to Brighton and Hove, he worked in advertising on the local newspaper, the Evening Argus for several years. From there forward he worked as a graphic artist for over 30 years, firstly, at a local graphic art company, Brighton Engravings.  Then soon after this, he worked freelance as a Graphic artist and photographer leading him to setting up and running his own studio – Serif Studios ‘complete with a printing press, photographic studio and dark room’ which he ran for many years.

But at heart John was a serious artist - a classical, surreal, abstract artist. He wasn’t interested in advertising or money. Throughout his life, John put together a life’s collection of serious abstract art – many of which he disregarded and when asked why, he’d say ‘because they have to be exactly right and he felt they weren’t’.

John and Jane Weaver's art
John’s work is about emotions while Jane’s work is about aesthetics.’
Family life
John and Jane had three children two of which were ill for most of their lives with one of them - their much loved son Theo sadly passing away at the age of 40.   Many say this pain contributed to the remarkable art they both produced

(Photographs of John and Jane Weaver taken by best friend of 77 years Peter Green, undated)
John Weaver was a classical abstract artist favouring his unique concept of space beyond earth, outside the solar system which includes colour, composition and movem. His paintings are classical in composition, meaning that if you move something or took it away, the whole composition wouldn’t feel right when you looked at it – it would jar and lose its balance. However, they are abstract in subject.  His great concern was his classical spatial composition and this along with his symbolism gives us a perfect example of abstract art in its purist form.  His images are surreal but sometimes refer to modern life.

Jane Weaver’s work is figurative (you can tell what it is and where you are - reality as she sees it). Her collection includes her beautiful watercolours of landscapes and ‘still life’ for which over the years she has been invited to do many demonstration classes, along with many popular scenes of Brighton and Hove. 

Not only has she been known locally for her brilliant watercolour painting but has sold many to people from all over the world.  When she paints in oils she likes to paint allegorical scenes along with many popular scenes of local people amusing themselves in Brighton and Hove.  And it is due to the popularity of a handful of these that she has started to have copies made in the form of prints and cards.

During retirement John and Jane Weaver (Jane continued teaching part-time) took art many local art festivals including the Brighton Artists’ Open House for about 12 years, the Brunswick Art Festival and the Brunswick Festival.  The Brighton Artist’s Open House, during which  they received some very good reviews, provided  them with the magnificent opportunity to exhibit their art in their beloved Brunswick square home of 60 years and was an inexpressible finale to John Weaver’s life.  Every weekend John Weaver had a crowd of people around him listening to him talking about his art:

As when preparing for exhibitions in the past, John and Jane Weaver worked as a team whilst setting up their Open House and would completely convert their lounge into an art gallery, taking off doors, moving furniture and putting up stands.  John Weaver became quite well-known for not wanting to sell any of his paintings as the majority of them were part of his ‘Spatial Composition Collection’ each being a natural development of the previous.  On occasion, he was offered good money for some of his paintings such as the ‘Equilibrium – (Orbital Madonna)’ and the ‘Galaxy (Arabesque)’. People seemed astonished that he wouldn’t sell his work. For this reason he started to sell prints, Giclee prints on canvas and cards along with Jane who has sold a lot of her originals over the years.

Safeguard Brunswick

Their love of Brunswick Square

To the council of Hove, the town clerk and their Principal officers
‘As these buildings become older and more historic and as Brighton and Hove become increasingly international towns, the asset of these buildings makes the matter of their constant preservation of great aesthetic and therefore commercial value’.
                                                                                  (John Weaver, 1974)

60 years ago, due to their love of aesthetics John and Jane Weaver instantly fell in love with the remarkable renaissance architecture of Brunswick Square with the sea roaring at its feet. It was like a Greek temple to them. They say its beauty gave them a lot of their inspiration for their art.   In fact they loved the square so much that back in the 1974 John and Jane started a campaign and a petition in their front room to save the beautiful Brunswick Terrace West from demolition by the property developers who had recently bought it.  They gained 6000 signatures, including those such as Sir Lawrence Oliver’s and Sir Nikolaus Pevsner, to save their much loved and stunning Brunswick Terrace West. 

John kept a file complete with all the letters he wrote to the Hove Civic society, the Regency society and the council amongst others along with all the research and the photographic leaflets he did in those days to ensure the safeguarding of Brunswick Terrace West.
                                   (Leaflets and photography: John Weaver, 1974)

Quote from a letter to Nikolaus Pevsner :
‘The entire block shown in our leaflet, has been in the hands of property developers for some two or three years and there is, as yet, no visable sign that there is the will or the available money to save these buildings from decay.’                                                                                                                                                                                              (John Weaver, 1974)