J. McNeil Sargent
has been a dynamic force in the San Diego art scene since her move here
over twenty-seven years ago from Washington, D.C. A world traveler with
a wide-ranging experience in the arts, her focus has been largely in
the graphics field. She is also an accomplished painter in oils.
Upon tracing her roots back
to John Singer Sargent and James McNeil Whistler, it prompted her to
take the "nom d'artiste" J. McNeil Sargent (aka Jean Braley).
One of her first undertakings, when she arrived here, was to organize
and serve as president of the local chapter of National Artists Equity.
The chapter grew to a membership of over three hundred artists. Several
"Art Laws" protecting the rights of artists and their work
passed in the California in 1980 were due in part to her going to Sacramento
and advising Senator Sieroty of the artists needs.
In 1982, she was asked by
artist Francoise Gilot to become Executive Director of the Printmaker's
Atelier. Under her guidance the Atelier gained international recognition
in the graphics field. Currently, she is chairperson of the Sargent
Art Group, a partnership of professional and emerging artists.
McNeil is represented in
over four hundred public and private collections, and is listed in "Who's
Who in American Art." Her original graphics are in the National
Biblioteque of Paris, France; the American Embassy program in Washington,
D.C.; the Las Vegas museum, Las Vegas, NV and others. She has exhibited
her work in numerous museum shows throughout the world as well as several
one-person shows in galleries and museums throughout America, and in
India and France. Her work has also been published in several magazines,
books, and on film.
McNeil finds inspiration
on the Cote d'Azur, where she spends half of each year working on her
art for upcoming exhibits. The Center for Woman's Studies at San Diego
State University, named McNeil Sargent as one of the four outstanding
woman artists in San Diego.