One of Eugene Yoor’s stained glass pieces at Sint-Walburgiskerk in Antwerp, Belgium.

Jan Yoors was born in Antwerp on April 18th, 1922 to Eugeen Yoors and Magda Peeters. Eugeen was a prolific stained glass artist and painter, having studied under Gustave Moreau. In Eugeen’s Studio, Yoors spent hours sketching and painting on scraps of paper and watching his father work. In this space Eugeen would also recount takes and listening to about his own experiences with the Roma in Spain, heroic tales of knights and dragons, as well as stories from Indian sacred texts, all of which would live in Yoors’s consciousness and live on in Yoors’s own oeuvre. It was not only Eugeen’s colorful tales that stayed with Yoors, but the very colors that went into his stained glass designs, which Yoors later recalled as resembling “oversized precious and semiprecious stones. Vibrant vermillion, flaming sun-like orange, intense ultra marine blues, royal purple, luminous golden yellow, radiant reds, and vivid green.” All of these colors and tales stayed with Yoors, who wrote how they “woke in me a paradisiac nostalgia ever since, and which many years later would bring me back to color and make of me an artist, after for a while rejecting art as an escape.”

Several of Jan’s drawings made at home with his father.