FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Kelley Johnson, Flickering and Floating / Here and There
May 19 – July 3, 2016 @ Arts+Leisure
Opening reception: Thursday, May 19th 7-10pm
Arts+Leisure is pleased to present Miami-based artist Kelley Johnson’s solo project Flickering and Floating / Here and There, opening May 19th and running until July 3rd. This will be Johnson’s first solo project in New York City.
The heart of Kelley Johnson’s artistic language is centered on the importance of 2D line juxtaposed by individualized 3D interactions of viewers within his landscape. Space and structure are key elements that determine the framing of his art and installations. Johnson’s sculptural paintings are fastidiously fashioned from layers of acrylic and vinyl strips, moldings, mirror and tape. The components flow from the canvas and connect to adjacent walls, extending into the room to animate the space as explored. Walking through these elements creates a movement of experience, evoking infinite patterns with interactive shapes, shadows, and colors. Planes obscure one another, while varying spaces open and close. The shadows dance against light, as the plastic planes reveal shifting forms, conjuring colors and designs that weave in and out of webbed sections. With this range of vantage points, the space is built from the floor up and the wall outwards, lifting the viewer into an immersive journey all his own.
At the tender age of twelve, Johnson began working full-time during summer breaks for his family’s suburban housing development company in St. Louis. The artist’s affinity for structural assembly began with these framing and finishing crews, learning the methods of constructing “stick-built” houses characteristic of mid-western homes. Framing houses provided the foundational concept of constructing networks from vertical and horizontal beams, which then became spaces and structures. The changing positions of rafters, joists, two-by-fours and thinner moldings influenced the orientation, proportion, and illusion that later informed his artistic study and practice. As remembered by the artist, “I believe that this early experience had the most impact on how I think about constructing my work. The way I think of space and structure I am sure comes from [urban housing] framing.”
Johnson’s installation at Arts+Leisure will cobble together these foundational elements, pairing them with fresh concepts to optimize the observational power of the viewer. A sense of choreography will be prevalent in Johnson’s construction, but ultimately the experience will dependent upon the viewer’s own interactions and descent into the visual odyssey. Despite its functional and industrial qualities, the linear dimensions, vibrant colors, and refracting lights give the installation an organic and lifelike nature. Components breathe in and out as visitors circulate through the space, viewing the artistic labyrinth of iridescent materials arranged in a kaleidoscopic array of networked materials.
Kelley Johnson was born in 1973 in Houston, Texas and grew up in St. Louis, Missouri. He received his BFA at Parson School of Design and his MFA at Indiana University. Kelley has been professionally working in the field of painting, sculptural painting, and installation for over 15 years. His works have been written about in numerous online publications such as the Miami Herald, Huffington Post, and Riverfront Time, as well as featured in New American Paintings.
Please join us at the opening reception for the artist on Thursday, May 19thfrom 7 to 10 PM. Refreshments will be served, and the artist will be present. A full-color artist book will be available for sale. For more information, or to order the artist’s book, please contact Nick Lawrence at firstname.lastname@example.org