Mr. Jean Stern
Executive Director of the Irvine Musem


jean-stern-executive-director-irvine-museum1Jean Stern has been the executive director of The Irvine Museum since its inception in 1992.  An art historian and a recognized authority on California Impressionism, he has extensive experience as an author, curator, lecturer, and teacher.

He has taught art history at Mesa College, in San Diego, and at San Diego State University.  He was executive director of Petersen Galleries, in Beverly Hills, from 1979 to 1991.

He is the author of numerous books and articles on California art, including monographs on important artists such Franz A. Bischoff, Alson S. Clark, Sam Hyde Harris and Elsie Palmer Payne.  He has written essays for numerous books and museum exhibition catalogues, such as all three PLEIN AIR PAINTERS of CALIFORNIA series of books; GUY ROSE: American Impressionist; ENCHANTED ISLE: A History of Painting on Santa Catalina Island; CALIFORNIA: This Golden Land of Promise (co-authored with Joan Irvine Smith) and FRANZ A. BISCHOFF: The Life and Art of an American Master, published in 2010. His latest book, CALIFORNIA LIGHT: One Hundred Years of the California Art Club (co-authored with Molly Siple) was published in 2011 by Rizzoli International Publications, NY, to positive critical revue.

Mr. Stern has presented tours and lectures on California Art at the International Cultural Center, Krakow, Poland; the Mona Bismarck Foundation in Paris, France; the National Academy Museum in New York; Terra Museum in Chicago; Oakland Museum; Los Angeles County Art Museum; the Mission San Juan Capistrano; the San Diego Museum; the Gilcrease Museum in Tulsa, Oklahoma; the Gibbes Museum in Charleston; Brigham Young University Museum; the Autry National Western Heritage Center; The National Cowboy and Western Heritage Museum; The Nature Conservancy of California; the California Art Club; the Bohemian Club in San Francisco; and many others.  He was a consultant to and appears in IMPRESSIONS OF CALIFORNIA, a PBS documentary video series on art in California, and on PLEIN AIR: Painting the American Landscape, a 2007 PBS video series.

Mr. Stern was born in Casablanca, French Morocco, and grew up speaking French.  In 1955, at the age of nine, his family left Morocco and immigrated to the United States as refugees from the Moroccan revolution.  A naturalized American citizen, he holds dual citizenship in the United States of America and in France.