John DeFaro, (born John DeCristofaro) is a queer, self-taught artist, environmentalist, and activist. John’s work as a visual artist was first influenced as a youth in an apprentice type of mode from his one-on-one connections with numerous renowned artists who were neighbors in the Hamptons, NY.
From age 25-27 John worked as an assistant in Southampton for Henry Geldzahler, the noted curator, critic and public official whose enthusiastic advocacy of contemporary art made his name synonymous with the art scene in NYC for three decades, in the 60’s through the 80’s.
In 1991 John then began sketching new ideas for early American furniture design, which led him to his next venture. At the age of 29 John created original home furnishing designs for Lexington Home Brands in Thomasville, NC. For Lexington he launched a 100-piece licensed home furnishings collection bearing his name entitled ‘DeCristofaro – The Art and Soul of Country’ for which he received royalties for over five years. In recent years his work has moved in new directions in installation, drawing and painting that return him to his initial impulses focused on environmental issues, supporting fellow creatives, and gardening.
In 2015 John was selected by curator Carol Jazzar for the exhibit Into the Wild at Miami-Dade Kendall Campus Gallery, in 2014 a wall sculpture for the Boca Raton Museum's 63rd Annual All Florida Juried Competition and Exhibition and in 2012 another wall sculpture Who is Nest, which received Artist Choice Award at the Miami Beach Botanical Gardens Common Roots exhibit.
From 2015-2017 John served as the Executive Assistant for Tigertail Productions, Miami. He is also a recipient of two Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs Artist Access Grants and the Food for Life Network Miami Heart of Gold Award. In recent years John became the part-time assistant to renowned art conservator Viviana Dominguez, owner and founder of Art Conservators Lab LLC. expanding his interests and closeness to fine art.
Most recently in 2020 John received the Oolite Arts Miami COVID-19 Artist Relief Grant, The national Artist Relief Grant from Americans for the Arts, and two MAS COVID Relief Grants from Miami-Dade County Department of Cultural Affairs/The Perez Art Museum, Miami.