A new language of art, a spirit expressed
In the 1990s, Chicago artist Shanoor began developing
a new art form,
a bold marriage of media that
celebrates the unexpected and gives
unique visual expression to the spirit
has termed this
new artistic language Neo-Symbolic
Expressionism or Toto Coelo,
which means “extreme conditions.” As an art form, it
American icons by taking classic symbols to their
the eye and mind to see them in
a dramatic new way and expressing
a new spirituality.
The Celebrate Freedom collection is Shanoor’s
most recent foray
Toto Coelo. Born
of his strong feelings about the indifference
towards man, it is an impassioned response to the tragic events of
September 11, 2001. With
graphic urgency, Shanoor embraces
the symbolism of the American flag to create an emotional tribute to
the nation’s strength and unity.
The images of Celebrate Freedom utilize the
drama of photography
wedded to the richness of oil and the stark impact of inks and acrylics.
boldness vibrates both energy and change, and it
about the artist’s anguish, joy, grief, hope and spirit.
“I take pride in the generosity of this country,” states
I was not born in the United States, I am grateful for
fertile land of love, hope, dreams and most importantly, freedom.
My recent artwork is
a reaction to the injustice so often shown toward
humanity. It emphasizes my profound
you can’t take away
it is a basic
birthright of humanity.”
Shanoor began painting at an early age in Europe. He
advertising design in London and studied film at the
In the 1980s, he
began creating art with a camera, using acrylic painting
to underscore patterns on the negative images. His exploration of Toto Coelo,
began in the 1990s, continues today.
From his earlier endeavors to help AIDS victims and
breast cancer to his current visual
meditation on freedom, Shanoor has
always sought to take a stand on the events of our
his conviction in a way that both informs and
have been exhibited internationally,
and he has appeared on Channels 11
and 56. A recipient of numerous awards
for his painting, murals,
photography and graphic
design, Shanoor continues
to seek new ways
to express his
creativity and spirit.
"I believe Art is the essence of Being. Through the gray ashes of 9/11
we continue towards life and
hope. Through oneness we will find strength;
through unity we find
peace. When the dust settles a new life begins,
we will always remember
to uphold and cherish freedom."