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Don Biehn (1942 - 2022)


Don Biehn was born on Feb. 22, 1942, in Beloit, WI.  He grew up exploring the hills, valleys, lakes, and river banks of Southern Wisconsin.  The impressions and images of empty roads and long shadows are reflected in his art.  Don trained in design and illustration at the Ringling School of Art in Sarasota, Florida.  During his years in the commercial art field, he worked as an independent artist in Milwaukee and San Francisco.  After moving back to St. Paul, MN in the mid 70’s, he opened his own graphic art studio which eventually grew to a staff of 15 artists.  The studio received multiple awards from the graphics community for design and illustration.  He has also worked independently and as a staff Art Director.  


Through the years, Don used fine art as a release from the busy world of advertising art.  Always reflecting the Midwestern countryside, his choice of medium was watercolor.  His talent as a watercolor artist has been recognized by his peers, gallery exhibits, and the Minnesota State Fair Fine Art Exhibit. Later, Don studied in the pleine aire school of art and made the transition to oils.  Still reflecting the quiet scenes of the country and the tranquil corners of the city, Don became a devoted pleine aire painter--painting outside in the below zero weather as well as the mosquito laden humidity of July.   Of his landscapes in oil and watercolor, Biehn stated, “I want the viewer to feel they have stood in the same spot, felt the breeze, smelled the air and water and know the texture of the scene.” 


In 2011, Don’s work was named “best-of-the-best in impressionism” with the President’s Choice Award – one of only 6 primary awards in a juried exhibition of 200 paintings – from the American Impressionist Society. Don was a signature member of the Society and earned the distinction of signing his work with the “AIS” initials. 


Don passed away on June 15, 2022.  

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