Early spring has brought torrents of rain, warm Chinook winds and precipitous bloomings to the garden. Tulips, plums blossoms, the wild yellow flame of the forsythia, a riot of colors and scents that inspire bursts of energy and shifting moods.
I have two very different shows coming up this spring with radically different themes. There is a method to the madness, as I go back and forth between the grime and grit of urban construction sites, the urban streets, and the refuge of nature. Both series are about the interplay of structure and surface, and the narrative of impermanence. With both subjects I use my camera to capture moments on the edges of transition.
My mixed media techniques are evolving and gradually scaling up. New refinements to the plaster techniques have required new tests, and I have been doing dozens of small experimental pieces, which invite me to take risks. I think I should have a whole new category of work titled “Failures and Redemptions.” Many of the best pieces are the disasters I revisit with nothing left to lose. Thinking like a printmaker requires precision and strategy, but part of the strategy is knowing when to let go.
Here are some of the stages of creating surface, otherwise known as the highly paid occupation of “watching paint dry.”
Look for details on upcoming shows soon. Meanwhile, my motto for spring is walk, inhale, sneeze. If you see a girl walking down the street with bunch of plum branches, a Kleenex box and a Sony NEX6, that’s me.
All artwork © Iskra Johnson 2016 and may not be reproduced without permission.