John Kasyn was born in Poland in 1926 and came to Winnipeg in 1938. He always loved to draw and began his artistic training at the Winnipeg Museum while in public school. His education was furthered at both the Ontario College of Art and the Central Polytechnic - both in Toronto. It was in Toronto where he gained a love for the old houses and buildings which have become the subject of much of his work.
Kasyn is a member of the Ontario society of Artists in Water colour and received the Gold Medal at the Annual Exhibition of the Canadian Society of Painters in Water colour of London, Ontario in 1966. His works are part of many public and private collections across Canada and are valued for both their artistic merit and the nostalgic documentation they maintain of historic buildings in Toronto.
"Kasyn has spent four decades painting the city's neighborhoods mostly in winter--an older, gentler Toronto of slightly shabby working class semis before the renovators moved in. His affection for the bricks-and-mortar of the city radiates from his work; he has elected himself to get the details of every stoop, every window, every dripping icicle right. Houses, like people, put their best face forward but Kasyn is more curious about the rear view. People don't live at the front of their houses. The back lanes are more interesting than the front. That's where the clotheslines are, the lean-tos, the garbage cans and broken fences." The Toronto Star, December, 2000