CLEVELAND, Ohio — On the first floor of Cleveland’s ArtCraft building, all the tools of an artist — cans of paint, jars of used brushes, canvases and sketchpads — are placed on the floor and tables in a long studio. Wooden shelves hold up decades’ worth of work: paintings, sketches, drawings and photographs.

That work was left behind when John W. Carlson suddenly died on Dec. 20, 2020, due to an abdominal aneurysm. He was 66.

The art in Carlson’s studio reflects the Cleveland artist’s whole life in images of joy, laughter, grief and pain.

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