Known for both his unusual artistic productions and for his process of combining various aspects of science with black history, the NY-based American artist (b.1977) is among an influential cadre of contemporary artists whose work employs a wide range of media to explore the themes of art history, cultural identities, personal narratives, literature, philosophy, materiality and critical history. For his first solo exhibition in Asia, he has created brand new works, including Bruise Paintings, Surrender Paintings and Seascape Paintings, alongside his mosaics. He continues to work with a complex range of iconographies to explore collective and historical expressions of longing and displacement, while speaking to the times we live in.
The exhibition reflects on triumphs and traumas – both personal and collective – over the recent years. The works track both his individual personal and artistic evolution throughout the last several years but also mirror the global zeitgeist. The presentation also includes a newly-developed series of Seascape Paintings in which canvases are coated completely with Neutral White or Prussian Blue oil paint which Johnson wipes away and scratches into with shapes reminiscent of row boats, metaphors for independence and individualism.