Fruit of the Secret God / The neo-symbolist photography of John Santerineross

John Santerineross is an artist who does not classify or categorize himself; he prefers to let the viewer decide and define his work. He has been called everything from “the world’s leading Neo-symbolist photographer” by Germany’s leading photography magazine, PROFIFOTO, to an “artistic assassin who wants to artistically
assassinate Christianity, by Bill Donohue in his
newest book. More

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About John Santerineross

John Santerineross is an artist who does not like to be classified or categorized. He prefers to let the viewer decide and define. He was named "the world's leading neo-symbolist photographer of our time" in the December 2007 issue of PROFIFOTO, Germanys leading photography magazine. His unique style and content have inspired an entire new generation of artists. His complex aesthetic is derived from a mix of his exposure to Catholicism and Santeria and by his fascination with Greek mythology, world religions and iconography.

John Santerineross' first book, Fruit of the Secret God, introduced his powerful images to the world in 1999. His second monograph entitled Dream, was published in October of 2004. This commanding book is considered by many to be the definitive example of contemporary neo symbolist photography. It is an exploration of John's dream imagery and iconography through the use of the photographic medium.

John never elucidates his imagery for fear of limiting viewers’ personal interpretation. He is influenced by the early symbolists’ belief that “the creation of a mood is as important as the transmission of information, (it must also) seek to engage the entire mind and personality of the viewer by appealing to the viewer’s emotions and unconscious mind, as well as to their intellect”.

Throughout John’s artistic career, his refusal to be limited by any one medium has lead him to master multiple artistic disciplines; he has been a ceramist, sculptor, painter, and mixed media artist. He has recently delved into the world of moving images and has already directed several short art films including “Child, Doll or Bone” which captures the beauty and intimacy of a cutter’s compulsion and “Destin”, the story of a young girl questioning her ability to avoid her tragic fate. At this very moment, Santerineross is in the preproduction phase of a powerful, warped tale of a doll maker entitled “Ningyoushi”. Santerineross’ uncompromising integrity, ethics and belief in freedom of expression continues to show even now through his avant-garde photographic images and films.

Unlike many of John’s contemporaries, his use of digital manipulation is extremely limited. 95% of what you see in the photograph was on the set that day. All blurs or distortions are created by either the model moving at his instruction or objects that are moving in the set by means of a variety of intricate motors, wires and mobiles. Due to the complexity of his images, John only shoots approximately 12 images a year, which makes every one of them extremely significant and personal.

It is his commitment, integrity, passion and dedication that cause many admirers to consider him to be one of the most influential image-makers of this generation.


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