John Sutton was born in Yonkers, NY in 1955. He attended St.Thomas Choir School in New York City (1967-1970) and as a student/chorister and was trained in the musical heritage of the Anglican tradition at St. Thomas Church Fifth Avenue. While at St. Thomas he experienced the artistic direction of many conductors including Leopold Stokowski and Leonard Bernstein. After graduating from St. George’s School in Newport, RI (1974) John moved to Boston where he studied piano with Mme Margaret Challoff and worked on harpsichords and clavichords at the Herz Harpsichord shop in Cambridge, MA (1975-1978) as a finisher and cabinetmaker. In 1978 John moved to New York City where he was first employed by Steinway Pianos (1978) in Long Island City as a technician in the grand piano action department. This was followed by work as a cabinetmaker with Mann & Trupiano, Pipe Organ Restorers and Builders (1979-1995) where he was involved in many restoration projects including the 1980 rescue of a Hook & Hastings organ, opus 576, 1871, installed at the Church of St. Alphonsus Liguori, 310 West Broadway, NYC on the eve of the demolition of that building. He was also the principal cabinetmaker fabricating an historical adaptation of an organ made by Boston, MA organ builder Thomas Appleton (1830) for the First Presbyterian Church, Richmond, VA (installed 1989), the original having been previously restored by Mann & Trupiano and installed in the gallery of the Arms and Armor wing at the Metropolitan Museum, NYC. John’s interest in woodworking and design was influenced by American Shaker and traditional Japanese and Chinese design, and led him to inclusion in furniture design shows at the annual International Furniture Fair at the Jacob Javitts Center, the Design and Decorator Building (NYC), and ABC Furniture (NYC).
John’s fine art education included studies at The Art Students League, NYC (1983-1987) and studio work with Michael Burban (Life Drawing), Michael Pelletierri (Lithography), Leo Manso (Painting), Stephen Greene (painting), and as a studio assistant for sculptor Ursula von Rydingsvaard (1981-1985). In 2001 John moved to Arlington, VT where he continued his work in furniture restoration and design, developed an online educational origami presence with artist Leyla Torres (2005-present) and continued his work in photography. Alongside his interest in landscape, portraiture, and street photography, John has documented a number of theater productions at the Hubbard Hall Theater in Cambridge, NY including five directed by John Hadden (Macbeth, King Lear, Shirley Valentine, Ondine, Tartuffe), and Jeanine Haas (Of Mice and Men). In 2016 he will be engaged in a project covering the Vermont Legislative session in Montpelier, VT. His photographs have been published by the Sun Magazine, the Manchester Journal and are included in private collections in the United States, Colombia, and The Netherlands.