Chris Johanson
I am Human, Abstract Foil, No Humans IV

Chris Johanson’s paintings, sculptures, and installations break down everyday scenes and commonplace dramas into colorful forms; the darkest sides of humanity are invoked with humor. The works comment on subjects such as capitalism, consumerism, the art world, and therapy. The triptych I Am a Human, Abstract Foil, No Humans IV (2004) is a meditation on the cosmos. It consists of three small paintings: one of a man with a head of multicolored fragments (I Am a Human), one of an abstract rainbow-colored geometric form on foil (Abstract Foil), and one of what appears to be a brightly burning star or a representation of the Big Bang (No Humans IV). In a playful but serious manner, it envisions the evolution of the world and the creative forces at play in nature and humankind.

The prolific Chris Johanson produces paintings, zines, installations, and sculptures that are notable for their earnest, almost childlike abstraction. His work delves unabashedly into the emotional, social, and spiritual aspects of human nature, tracking points of commonality and difference using simple shapes and lines as well as an unflagging sense of magnanimous humor.