Steve Johnson studied for a BA Hons in Fine Art at Goldsmiths College London, and for an MA in Sculpture at Chelsea College of Art. His tutors at Goldsmiths were Michael Craig-Martin, Tim Head and Richard Wentworth and at Chelsea, Richard Deacon.
His work has been exhibited widely in the U.K and Europe. In the U.K, works have been exhibited at the Hayward Gallery - London, the Henry Moore Institute - Leeds, Longside Gallery - Yorkshire Sculpture Park, the Royal Academy of Arts - London, the Science Museum - London and the Serpentine Gallery - London. In Europe works have been exhibited at the Berlinische Gallery Landesmuseum - Berlin, Hilversum Museum - Holland, Kunsthaus - Dresden, and the Scharpf Gallery / Wilhelm Hack Museum - Ludwigshafen.
He has received awards from amongst others, the Arts Council of England, the British Council, and the Pollock - Krasner Foundation, New York and his works can be found in public collections, including those of the Arts Council England, the Berlinische Galerie, Berlin and the Science Museum, London.
The artist talks about the exhibition 'Everyday's a Film with No Script' on 25/08/10 at DavisKlemmGallery, Frankfurt. Film by Thomas Steimer, courtesy DavisKlemmGallery.
My works since 2000 bring together three main concepts:
Each building or site represented has had its context deleted - the rest of the world has vanished . An island remains.
An archaeological term recording time physically, as layers of earth and history compressed underfoot.
The placing of each wall sculpture high up the wall or a drawings eye line below ground level, results in a viewers point of view being planted firmly underground. The view is from below, from the ancestral viewpoint.
Each wall sculpture or watercolour juxtaposes this concept of Deep Time with the contemporary surface on which we live and each building or site becomes disconnected from the whole. The types of places represented include domestic interiors, urban transit spaces (pedestrian islands or metro tunnels), spaces for communal storytelling (cinemas) and places of retreat, where people can at last enjoy doing nothing in particular.
But whatever the building or place represented, the dialogue between the built environment and the earth is always vertical - between above and below.
I see the wall sculptures as psychological models much more so than architectural models and the watercolours as autonomous, independent images. (The subject of a watercolour is often made after the subject has been made as a wall sculpture). If a watercolour precedes the sculpture I would prefer to think of the sculpture as a monument to a drawing as opposed to a drawing being a rehearsal for a sculpture.
Steve Johnson 2011
Born 1953 in Whitstable, Kent, England. Lives/works in London.
1974 - 1977 University of London, Goldsmiths College School of Art (BA).
1981 - 1982 Chelsea School of Art (MA).
1987 - 2010 University of the Arts London.
Occasional Visiting Teacher - Sheffield City Polytechnic, Bath College of Art, Goldsmiths College, Slade School of Fine Art.
Solo Exhibitions (selected)
2016: Virtual 5: DavisKlemmGallery, Wiesbaden.
2016: Steve Johnson: Eye Try, Stephen Lawrence Gallery, University of Greenwich School of Architecture & Media.