Cleveland Print Room Mourns and Looks Ahead

Photo by Billy Delfs

It is with profound sadness that we announce the sudden death of our great friend, John W. Carlson. John, an artist, musician, garbageman, storyteller, writer, philosopher, teacher, and mentor, was also the beloved partner of and artistic collaborator with Shari Wilkins, founder and strategic director of the Cleveland Print Room.

We grieve the absence of John’s wicked sense of humor and playful nature. His ability to connect and delight in the stories and experiences of others was indicative of his choice to be present and available to those with whom he connected. We are grateful for John’s care and his art practice, which he so generously shared as a teaching artist. John’s legacy includes the selfless donation of his organs, giving others the gift of continued life. A memorial will take place this summer. Details will be announced at a later time. Thanks to Billy Delfs for providing this photo of John in his studio.

The Suitcase Project is a visual arts project that focuses on the collection and/or creation of objects, photographs, and writings that may be found in suitcases that migrants, immigrants, or other displaced people would bring from their past lives. This project allows participants to examine relationships with the history of their ancestors, thereby creating a space for them to connect with themselves and each other. It will be on display via the CPR website later this spring, along with being a part of a traveling exhibition in CPR’s gallery and the Akron Soul Train gallery. Dates to be determined.