Mark Johnson Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery One

MJ., 5211 Untitled

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MJ., 5990 Untitled

MJ., 5012 Untitled

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MJ., 6040 Untitled

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The world is full of unseen energies, flowing, fierce, or antic, that animate the visible. These energies move in vibrations that appear to us as light, or sound, or the shifting of tectonic plates, or as the myriad of phenomena that range in both directions of the spectrum. And there are energies of mind and heart, beyond any measure. In his art, Mark Johnson shows us evidence of the material world and intimates a finer reality usually hidden from us. He does his work with a spirited, intuitive élan that revels in a simultaneity of diverse forms and graphic strategies. The variety and complexity of his marks builds a nexus of visual frequencies from which emerges the final image. We sense that for the artist the work comes into being before his eyes. The gicleé prints’ directness posits a way to think about everyday life: forming and breaking down, allowing new structures to emerge, with reality layering upon itself, in endless motion. Johnson’s working process is both electronic and hand-made, by drawing on the computer, and then manipulating the color and layering of shapes on the screen. His method is close to traditional printmaking, with its graphic and painterly invention, while enjoying the speed and open possibilities of a digital media. But Johnson’s approach is not technological, either in imagery or feeling. Rather, it is closer to the modernist spirit of improvisational abstraction, whose lineage runs from Kandinsky and Klee to Abstract Expressionism and its more recent variants. This heritage allows the artist to move from an exploration of inner consciousness to the pure sensations of the visual. While abstract in its openness to interpretation, Johnson’s work is full of clear allusions to the known world. There are at times strong references to the landscape, with the swelling form of a hill, or to atmospheres of shifting tonalities. There are hints of the realm of food and dinner tables and sociability. And there are constructive forms that imply the presence of human shelters surrounded by nature. In each case, everything seems infused with a psychic energy, expressed in the form of a veil of interlocking runic writing or the unsettled weather of manic drawing. Above all, Johnson’s art is at once poetic, visual, and strongly physical. His prints create worlds infused with unnameable feelings, that run on the fuel of vibrant and subtle color, and the power of the active engagement of the artist’s eye and hand.


John Mendelsohn is a painter who has written articles and reviews on contemporary art for Cover Magazine, ArtNet Magazine, and The Jewish Week, as well as essays for exhibition catalogues. He teaches in the Studio Art Program at Fairfield University in Connecticut. He has contributed to the forthcoming book, A Book of Images: Reflections on Symbols, to be published by the Archive for Research in Archetypal Symbolism at the C.G. Jung Institute, New York.

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Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Two

Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Three

Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Four

Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Five

Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Six

Mixed Media Monoprints Gallery Seven

Mixed Media Monoprint Gallery Eight

Mixed Media Monoprint Gallery Nine

Mixed Media Monoprint Gallery Ten

Visit the Mark Johnson Cosmic Gallery One