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John Coker railroad artist John Coker was born in September 1952 in Los Angeles, California. Following two years of college at the University of Denver, he began work as a brakeman and fireman for the Cumbres and Toltec Scenic Railroad in 1973. In 1981 he went to work for the Durango and Silverton Narrow Gauge Railroad, and was promoted to engineer in 1986. In 1990 he returned to the Cumbres Line, and worked as an engineer until his retirement in 1995.

John's artistic ability was recognized when he was young, and he has been painting seriously for the past twenty years. John has taken several art classes during that time, but he is basically self-taught. The long winter layoffs from railroading were spent developing his artistic skills. He became a full-time artist in 1995.

Exhibitions

  • Durango Arts Center Juried Exhibitions - 1984, 1986, 1987, 1996
  • Colorado Railroad Museum Exhibit - 1997
  • California State Railroad Museum Exhibit - 1999
  • Museo Cultural de Santa Fe Exhibit "El Tren" - 1999

Artwork In Publications

  • Narrow Gauge and Shortline Gazette - several covers thought the 1990s
  • RD Publications - Cover: Second edition of "Chama, Cumbres, and a Little Chili"
  • Cover: Second edition of "Durango: Always a Railroad Town"
  • Illustration: "The Southern"
  • Illustration: "Rio Grande Southern"
  • Illustration: "Rio Grande Southern II"
  • Illustration: "Gunnison"
  • Illustration: "The Chili Line"
  • Timber Times - Cover: "Hidden Treasures"
  • Cover: Second edition of "Mallets on the Mendocino Coast"
  • Cover: Second edition of "Narrow Gauge to the Redwoods"
  • Heimburger House - Cover: Second edition of "Nevada County Narrow Gauge"
  • Challenger Press - Cover: "Sunset on the Rio Grande Southern, Vol. I"

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