Art for Eternity

John T Katerberg

About image
John Katerberg is a West Michigan artist who focuses on painting and printmaking. His work can be found in homes, businesses, colleges, and churches around the world. John is a Graduate of Kendall College of Art, with a BFA in fine art-painting. John ‘s art has won numerous awards in local and regional art competitions. John is also a combat veteran of Desert Storm and Operation Enduring Freedom, with numerous awards and citations including the combat action badge and the purple heart medal from being wounded in combat. John has also volunteered as an art instructor locally for A.C.T. (Artists Creating Together), The Grand Rapids Home for Veterans, and in Florida at the Veterans Art Center Tampa Bay, Pinellas County Jail, and West care of Pinellas County.  John’s current work combines elements of man and the sublime presence of God with scenes of awe in nature. John’s current groundbreaking work combines his love of reduction printmaking and painting. Working on sheet brass, John completes a landscape painting and then using pneumatic grinders and engraving tools, the brightest areas of the composition come alive with glowing and shimmering brass. The reflection of light on John’s paintings inspired him to name this new technique “Illuminated Brass” paying homage to the illuminators of the 4th and 5th centuries that created art to help draw people closer to God.

The art of John Katerberg has always been unapologetically about bringing people to a deeper understanding of the ultimate creator-God. Throughout his artistic career, John has enjoyed the challenge of developing a unique compositional perspective, combined with a fully charged color pallet to make each piece of artwork, a stunning conversational  element to any room it occupies. Large landscape paintings have recently been the primary subject matter that Katerberg has used to reveal and study God's creation as he contemplates Romans 1: 19-21. 

"...since the creation of the world His invisible attributes, His eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly seen, being understood through His workmanship..." Romans 1:20

Katerberg's intention is to give the viewer a sense of the sublime in nature, where the presence of man sometimes takes up a smaller influence in the composition. Because of injuries sustained in Afghanistan in 2012, Katerberg turned to using drones as a way to capture reference photos of areas that he couldn't physically get to. Painting scenes that were elevated above the ground became therapeutic for Katerberg, as he worked to overcome PTSD from the day he was injured by a roadside bomb in Afghanistan.

John hand builds and stretches most of his larger paintings in order to gain the desired parameters for his composition as well as ensuring that the canvas surface will remain tight for generations. Most of Katerberg's paintings are on heavy duty gallery frames that allow the client to display the art without a frame.

John is currently working on a new painting technique that incorporates a combination of acrylic and oil paint on a subsurface of brass sheet. While painting on metal is not new, John's incorporation of painterly realism and polished brass is. The combination of a realistic scene in paint with the shimmering and flowing effect  of brass leaves the impression that the viewer is seeing two dimensions in one painting. The brass seems to move and flow behind the representation of the temporal plane, lending to the idea that the spiritual realm is more real than the physical world. John is calling the new technique "Illuminated Brass" painting in recognition of the Bible Illuminators of the 4th and 5th centuries. 

  • Jenison, Michigan, United States

Currently those interested in purchasing John's work can contact him by phone or email.

An interview with John Katerberg for ArPrize 2021