Kiel Johnson

Publish or Perish

October 17 – November 14, 2009

Press Release


Kiel Johnson
"Publish or Perish"

Opening Reception: Saturday, October 17, 5 – 7p
On view October 17 – November 14, 2009

Following up his 2008 inaugural solo show with Mark Moore Gallery, Kiel Johnson invites us to step inside his compellingly prolific imagination with several new drawings and a large-scale sculptural installation.

Deviating from his trademark cardboard medium, Johnson presents an altogether different exhibition born of obsessive personal inventory and astute social commentary. Publish or Perish illustrates the rapid expansion of globalized communication and the subsequent dichotomy of a retracted sense of interaction despite a heightened sense of interconnectivity. Using the printing press as the overarching figure of information's evolution, Johnson constructs a type of archival environment that denotes the transformation of our personal relationships to the tangible, the local and the sentimental. Johnson's distinctive fascination with mechanization and fine intricacies is embodied in both his construction of an "autobiographical" printing press, and his meticulous ink renderings, which demonstrate the compulsive human need to produce, document, proliferate and authenticate histories – much like the artist himself.

"His cartoons feel weirdly solid and real, while his physical objects are like cartoons come to life. Johnson has created his own wonderful world, distinct from ours, but always open to visitors."
- OC Weekly, "Best Visual Artist: Kiel Johnson" (2008)

A 2008 recipient of the Pollock-Krazner Grant, Kiel Johnson received his BFA from the University of Kansas (Lawrence, KS) before earning his MFA at California State University, Long Beach (Long Beach, CA). Johnson is in a number of public collections, including the Creative Artist Agency (Beverly Hills, CA) and Todd Oldham (New York, NY), and has exhibited in venues throughout the United States, such as 0the Architecture and Design Museum (Los Angeles, CA). Johnson will be featured in PULSE Miami Contemporary Art Fair this December with Davidson Contemporary (NY), with whom he will also exhibit with in Fall, 2010.

For more information on Kiel Johnson, the opening event or additional press materials, please visit or contact:

Catlin Moore
Gallery Manager


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