Jon Friedman’s Cape Cod Studio

At a sheriff’s auction during the recession of 1992, Jon R. Friedman and his wife, Joanne, purchased some land in Truro on Cape Cod in Massachusetts. “I’d always dreamed of building a studio in the middle of a landscape that I love,” says Friedman, “but I never really expected to have such an opportunity.” This photo shows his painting-and-sculpture studio with a roof deck looking out to Cape Cod Bay.

The gull-wing roofline is 9 feet tall at one corner of the building and 24 feet at the opposite corner.

Interior view from staircase.

This shot shows Friedman in his “unadorned, completely flexible workroom—an open, spacious, light-filled cube with large, uninterrupted painting walls and views to the outdoors on all sides.”
The lower 8 feet of his painting walls are covered in 3/4-inch plywood, so the artist can use screws or nails to adjust the heights of his pieces. He’s devised a “movable rest” (demonstrated in the photo), constructed with lengths of 1×4-inch lumber, on which he can steady and rest his hand without touching the painting surface. A vertical length of wood—mounted at top and bottom on short horizontal pieces—slides along a length of galvanized angle iron mounted temporarily on the wall above and running parallel to the painting in progress.

Friedman stores paints, brushes and materials on rolling carts (with wire shelving and heavy-duty casters) that are moved easily to different paintings or back out of the way.

Shots of the garden areas (above and below)

Friedman’s painting studio is on the ground level of the structure, along with a bathroom and a shop office. An interior staircase leads downstairs from the painting studio to a woodworking shop and sculpture studio. There, sliding glass doors on the rear wall open out to a sandy hollow that Friedman intends to turn into a sculpture court and outdoor work area.

An exterior staircase leads from the front entry on the ground floor to the second-floor library/office and then continues up to a roof deck with a 360-degree view. To the west, about a quarter of a mile away, is Cape Cod Bay. Friedman loves this setting. “Perched in the center of my view,” he says, “on the last high dune before the bay beach, beautiful in its simplicity, is the studio (circled in the photo) where Edward Hopper lived and worked every summer from 1934 until the year before his death in 1967.”

Friedman paints landscapes, figures and commissioned portraits. He also creates assemblages, constructions and site-specific installations. The artist divides his time between his studio in Cape Cod and one in New York City. His works are part of numerous public and private collections, and the artist regularly appears in solo and group shows. Learn more about him at

To see some of his artwork in our online gallery, click here.
Friedman was a feature artist in The Artist’s Magazine‘s May 2008 issue, available at

You may also like these articles: