John SchettinoArtist

New York, New York, United States
When I was young, my family often travelled between city, suburb and ‘the outdoors’. We were more than just tourists passing through, we were living, growing, playing, working and engaging in each of those spaces. That constellation of different worlds was home to all the delights and doubts that comprise many of my earliest memories. Today, the dynamism, homogeneity and Arcadian ideals associated with those environments are the things that inform my work and prompt my critical engagement with spatiality and human geography. In my research and my artwork I look to these subjects as a means of understanding perspective, position, and temporality.

Many of my recent projects use the delineation of space as raw material for the construction of landscape. I approach the conflicted history of the idea of landscape, its fluctuation between instrument of power and object of inspiration, as friction that can become a source of illumination for questions like: How does framed space reconcile enclosure and exclusion? How do exteriors and interiors communicate? Who narrates and remembers space? What is the relationship between landscape and mobility? – These are questions that have few easy answers and many challenging implications. The complexity that emerges from examining these issues is what moves me to respond to landscape in ways that range from reflection to resistance.

In my work, I use abstraction as a way to expand possibilities for understanding through multiple perspectives. Even today, abstraction can sometimes evoke skepticism because it seems far from everyday appearances. That distance, and it’s difference from convention, is what I take as the principal opportunity of an abstract approach. Abstraction articulates the space between what we feel and what we think, the gap between what we see and what we know. Like any unfamiliar space, abstraction is charged with potential to prompt responses that range from anxiety to insight. As an artist, my goal is to shape the context of that encounter into an opening for meaningful experience and cultural value.
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John Schettino's work has been exhibited in traditional gallery and museum settings including The National Arts Club, Washington Square Windows at Washington Square Park and The Bergen Museum of Art and Science. He has been awarded a residency at The Ragdale Foundation and selected for the annual New York public art project Art in Odd Places (AiOP). Schettino has exhibited in numerous temporary, ephemeral, outdoor and urban settings and his street art in protest of the 2004 Republican National Convention, in New York City, has been published in the Burbridge book “Sticker Shock”, by Matthew Kraus. For over ten years Schettino has been an annual critic in the Parsons/New School MFA Design & Technology Thesis Program. He has a BFA from The Cooper Union and lives and works in New York City.

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