March 8-April 12, 2008
The Jack Hanley Gallery, San Francisco, is pleased to present a solo exhibition of the work of Chris Johanson. From the age of 24 to his current age of 39, Chris Johanson has created works that transform day-to-day subject matter into simple stories in paintings that make bright, flat references to illustration or folk art. In recent years, Johanson's work, along with the work of other artists of the "Mission School," has become one of the most identifiable aspects of contemporary art in the San Francisco Bay Area for its highly personal and activist-like visual vocabulary. Johanson is well known for his often political, always social paintings and installations where he comments on the state of the world from where he is standing. His honest depictions of business men, bums, hippies, drunkards and general urban public coupled with his own colorful recurring abstract imagery are permeated with a poignant mix of internal turmoil, societal struggles and the happiness and good times that put everything into perspective. This exhibit is another situation where Chris shares his personal thoughts with people in a hope that he can make something that connects with people in a positive way.
Chris Johanson was born in 1968 in San Jose, California, and currently lives and works in Portland, Oregon. His work has been widely exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the U.S. and Europe, including recent shows at the Portland Art Museum in Portland, Oregon, and Galerie Georg Kargl in Vienna, Austria. In 2002, Johanson's work was included in the Whitney Biennial at the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, and in 2003 he received a SECA award from the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art.