Chris Johanson -- This is where you are
Chris Johanson has a way of sorting through the chaos and beauty of modern life, translating individual and collective experiences into a body of work that reveals the artist´s will to communicate both simply and directly.
His art typically takes the form of rough-hewn constructed environments, often featuring large sculptural components that provide an armature for exploring personal, social and cosmic concerns. Johanson is a social artist actuelly concerned with moral issues. His work evolves out of the artistic movement loosely coined by Glen Helfand as "the mission school," referring to the physical place where artists, writers and thinkers congregate. The neighborhood in Johanson's case is 16th and Mission Streets in San Francisco, an area that has nourished a thirty-something generation of San Francisco artists who mine an aesthetic of the local streets. Heartfelt, handmade and deeply observational work typifies this group; their brand of urban realism is blended with interests in graffiti, comic books, skateboarding and social activism. Johanson combines whimsical almost childlike, graffiti-based images with large ideas articulated in text.
He has had solo exhibitions in galleries nationwide including Jack Hanley Gallery in San Francisco, Roberts & Tilton Gallery, Los Angeles, Deitch Projects, New York and Vedanta Gallery, Chicago. He has received critical attention and acclaim through museum exhibitions including the 2002 Biennial Exhibition, Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, Hammer Projects, UCLA Armand Hammer Museum, East Meets West, ICA, Philadelphia and Bay Area Now, Center for the Arts Yerba Buena Gardens, San Francisco. He is also a recipient of the SECA Art Award, an auxiliary of the San Francisco Museum of Art.
Georg Kargl presents the first single show of the artist in Europe beside Paris and Rotterdam.