Melanie Johnson

The Spaces Between

2017 Exhibit Dates
Oct 27 To Dec 07

Melanie Johnson makes large-scale figurative drawings and paintings, working from observation and composite sources. Narrative is employed loosely in her work and she draws primarily on what is familiar as a catalyst for making. The imagery gives form to a dissonant accrual of lived experience, family histories and anecdotes, appropriated iconography, and the acting out of roles both obligatory and imagined. Surface, palimpsest, and indexical histories of making are meaningful in her process. She wants the physical drawing or painting to encapsulate imagery representative of a lived moment as well as the history of its own manifestation. The work should conjure a habitat that has one foot in reality and the other in a hazy internal state that evokes the slipperiness of memory, longing, and a disquieting curiosity – about an object, a body, an unexpected relationship, or a state of being
Johnson received her MFA in Painting from Indiana University and is an associate professor of art & design at the University of Central Missouri. She has exhibited regionally, nationally, and internationally. Most recently, Johnson was an Artist-in-Residence at the Charlotte Street Foundation Studio Residency Program in Kansas City, Missouri. She lives in the greater Kansas City area with her son and many pets.

Wild Domestic, 2015, charcoal on Arches, 72” x 144”