BiographyJohn Cabalka studied at the University of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa, earning his BFA in 1965. Originally from Los Angeles, CA, Cabalka was senior art director at Warner Brothers Records and Keye/Donna/Pearlstein Advertising. He was group creative director at CMF&Z Advertising before he started his own firm. Cabalka was the owner and creative director of Cabalka Studio USA, a nationally recognized design firm in Kansas City. A list of clients in his own firm include the 1994 World Cup Organizing Committee, the Kansas City Museum, Suzuki Automotive, and Lee Rider jeans. Cabalka also has taught at the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena, CA, Fullerton University in Fullerton, CA and the Kansas City Art Institute. Cabalka designed the book jacket for Megan Mallory’s Cooking in the Orchard, published in 1972.
In Loving Memory:
"Born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa to John and Gladys Cabalka, he is preceded in death by his parents and his brother Jim. He is survived by Cynthia, his spouse and beloved companion of fifty-three years. They reside in Ventura, California. John is survived as well by his son Shawn of Arroyo Grande, California, his daughter Michelle and her husband Marty Moe of San Jose, California, grandchildren Justin, Annalisa, and Joshua Cabalka, and Kristen and Mikayla Moe.
"John Cabalka's life was devoted to family, his many friends, and his love of the arts. As a young student he was awarded scholarships in both art and music. At sixteen he won a competition for his drumming which enabled him to study in New York with jazz legends Cozy Cole and Gene Krupa. Later he managed the rock band Lynn County. He worked for a time as the graphic designer in Chicago for Mercury Records. Eventually he became an art director for the seminal Los Angeles creative group, Klein, Barzman, Hecht. In time he became the art director for Warner Brothers Records and subsequently for Motown Records, where he was able to combine his love of art and music. He created quite a number of record jacket covers, many considered classic of the genre, for Stevie Wonder, Keith Jarrett, Leonard Cohen, Frank Zappa, Rod Stewart, and Van Morrison among others. In later years he shared wisdom accumulated during his incredibly productive career with students at the Kansas City Art Institute and Loyola Marymount University. Throughout his life, he was much devoted to his pets and his fondest memories were of fly fishing as a youth in the streams and rivers of Iowa and Minnesota."