Kiel Johnson

May 17 – June 21, 2008

Pack It Up, Put It Behind You. Let's Go..., 2008
pine, masonite and chipboard
14 x 36 x 60 inches

I Might Be A Little Late, 2008
ink on paper
22 x 28 inches

Really Quiet Day Today, 2008
collage on birch
48 x 60 inches

Survival Mode, 2008
paper, plastic tubing and poplar
dimensions variable

Export the Output, 2008
cardboard, chipboard and acrylic
48 x 96 inches

Press Release

Opening Reception: Saturday, May 17th, 5-7pm

Mark Moore Gallery is pleased to present new work by young artist Kiel Johnson in the project room. Hyperbole Studios, the encompassing name Johnson gives to his creative projects, gives some insight into the intention of his work. He is largely concerned with the dynamic between the factual and the fictitious. Exploring the middle ground between the two, he creates caricatures of reality, cartoon like systems that function yet seem as though they should not, and vice versa. Johnson plays with our expectations of logical mechanisms in order to prompt the viewer to ask questions, although, as he says, 'not deep, analytical questions, but strange, funny questions'.

The relationship between Johnson and the crowded and impacted Port of Long Beach (where his studio is based) has influenced his 2D and 3D work as he addresses the nature of commerce and the individual. His interest in the dynamic between the alienation of the individual and the overabundance of things in the world, fuels his curiosity about how things work and the physical mapping out and making of things (both real and imaginary).

Johnson creates playful, whimsical art with an edge. His personified works appeal to the viewer with their sense of fun but, like the hidden mechanics that make them work, reality is just below the surface.

Kiel Johnson received his BFA from the University of Kansas, Lawrence, KS before completing his MFA at California State University, Long Beach, CA. His work has been exhibited widely across the United States, including at MOCA Geffen Contemporary.
This year he was awarded the Pollock-Krazner Grant. This show will be his first solo exhibition at the Mark Moore Gallery. Kiel Johnson lives and works in Long Beach, CA.

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