"Truth and beauty ARE forever, and always to be found. It’s only that the outward manifestations of them change.
I agree, however, that the artist’s mission is to capture as much of any given manifestation as he can… that one always fails to some extent because one is not God (too bad, but there it is). What you produce is perhaps a sort of monument to it… a reminder and an incentive to keep aware that will inspire others to make discoveries, too.
I can only say an artist can never know what a wonderful thing he may be doing… that some of our apparent failures are our greatest successes."

— Charlotte MacLeod, Friend & Mystery Author, 1922-2005

- About the artist-

When confronted with these bold and beautiful images of the human form, one might think that Robert John Guttke limits his work to the camera. However, he is also a sculptor, artist and writer, and his multidisciplinary approach informs  every photograph. Sculpture is the most tactile of the arts, and Guttke presents two-dimensional likenesses so sculptural in texture they beg to the audience to reach out and touch them.

Guttke struggles in his work to define the beauty and the power of the human body.  He uses shadow and light, pushes his subjects to their physical limits and manages to capture them in a timeless fashion to be admired by all of us—because they represent all of us... mankind at its best.

A graduate of Rockford College in Illinois where he received his BFA degree in the fine arts under the guidance, wit, and wisdom of the late Professor Philip B. Dedrick.  He quickly made his home in Minneapolis and started exhibiting drawings and sculpture in various galleries across the country.

His use of the camera as only a tool to aid in such work evolved into a new medium.  His claim remains the same, "I am still sculpting but using the camera instead of clay.  My concern for composition comes from painters and sculptors I have admired my whole life; with a little bow toward the comic books and their illustrators from my childhood.

A very enigmatic event occurred early in his career when he penned his first script for the also enigmatic CBS television series 'Beauty and the Beast'.  This resulted in 'When the Blue Bird Sings' airing in March of 1987.  He wrote himself and his philosophies and proclivities in the arts into the episode and, as they tend to say, it was a great success. Actress Linda Hamilton enjoyed this diversion from the regular stories since she was able to laugh instead of weep through its eerie and mysterious goings on. 

Note cards of his photography began to surface, published by Museum Graphics, and soon after a collection of his early work appeared in the book ShadowLight.

Guttke's photography appeared in a number of publications around the world.  He has supplied graphics companies with images for calendars starting in 1993 and continues to 2015.  In 2008 he had his first solo exhibition in San Francisco. During the two week run he was deeply touched by the homeless of the city whom politely asked if they might come inside and look.  They offered great appreciation and insight to the photographs.  Sadly the gallery was a temporary space and though attendance, sales, and reviews were respectable the location was tantamount to the musical 'Brigadoon' and quickly faded away into the mists of time. 

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