Jack Bookbinder was born in Odessa, the Ukraine, in 1911. He received a B.S. in Education from the University of Pennsylvania in 1934 and studied under Henry McCarter and Daniel Garber at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts from 1930-1934. In 1946, Bookbinder received his M.F.A. from the Tyler School of Art and he was awarded an Honorary Doctor of Fine Arts from the Moore College of Art in 1976.
Bookbinder was on the faculty of the Barnes Foundation (1937-1944); the University of Pennsylvania (1946-1959); the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (1949-1961); Penn State (Summer 1950); and Kutztown University (Summer 1962).
He is a member of the National Academy of Design, the American Watercolor Society, Audubon Artists, Allied Artists of America, Philadelphia Watercolor Club, Society of Casein and Acrylic Painters, Philadelphia Print Club, Philadelphia Art Alliance, Artists Equity Association, Fellowship of the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, and the Woodmere Museum.
The author of several books and articles, Bookbinder also produced and appeared in the following television series: Fifteen Steps to the Art World, Art and the Artist, Artist USA, and Profiles in Art.
Bookbinder has participated in approximately fifty exhibitions. A brief listing of his awards include: First Prize, Tyler Alumni Annual, 1947 and 1951; First Prize, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts Fellowship Exhibition, 1952; Joseph Pennell Memorial Award, Philadelphia Watercolor Club, 1957; Da Vinci Art Alliance Award, 1964; First Prize for Oil Painting, Philadelphia Sketch Club, 1981; and Best of Show, Artists Guild of Delaware Valley, 1987.
His work is represented in the following collections: the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Library of Congress, National Gallery of Art, Washington, D.C., Yale University Art Gallery, Woodmere Art Museum, Reading Museum, and the Frye Art Museum, Seattle, Washington, among many others.
The artist died in June of 1990.