Natura Morte/Zen III / 2008 / Oil, alkyd on canvas / 58 x 59 inches / stephen haller gallery
Saw this exhibit the other week. From the press release:
Tags: canvas, representational, gregory johnston, paintings, stephen haller gallery, Paint
Johnston creates pictures within pictures and strives for dimensionality through layers and composition. Multiple overlays of symbols in his work surface through multiple layers of translucent color. There is a mysterious luminosity in Johnston’s work; his paintings are noted for their lush gorgeous surfaces.
The double rings in the paintings are representational of binding relationships – a variant design of an ancient Asian symbol for fidelity or infinity. Johnston explores the impulse expressed in the notations and symbols of many cultures in an attempt to visually articulate the aching human desire to communicate an intensity of thought and feeling.
The new paintings also reveal the influence of the rarified yet organic construct that is a Zen garden – carefully organized symbols embodying a rigorous aesthetic.
Johnston says of his work: “Every painting is a relationship within a relationship within a relationship, and structured much more like a novel or a piece of music, than the incredible open-endedness of a painting on a picture plane.”
May 23, 2008 1 Comment