Born in 1948, and raised near Los Angeles, J.E. Knauf left California in 1966 to study art at Northern Arizona University. While studying in Arizona, he often traveled the back roads of the Navajo, Hopi, and Apache reservations and Arizona's rural mining and ranching communities, taking in the character of the west. In 1970 Knauf transferred to the University of California, Irvine and studied under contemporary Avante Garde artists Tony DeLap, Billy Al Benston, Bruce Nauman, Robert Irwin, Vija Clemens and Ed Moses. Knauf is a founding member of The Other Side of the West, a distinguished group of contemporary Southwestern artists currently exhibiting paintings at museums around the country. He has been the cover artist for Southwest Art and U.S. Art Gallery and his work has been seen in numerous publications. His work is represented in major private and corporate collections throughout the U.S.