The Dense Skin of Humanity

West Branch Gallery
Mar 25, 2015 7:47PM

Janis Pozzi-Johnson paints hundreds of layers of color, slowly building up the surface over time to complete the work. The colors in Janis Pozzi-Johnson’sInvitation move quietly down through the piece. Browns and golds give way to a faded cyan that erupts with texture. A gold edge wraps the piece and contains the flow of color. Thick wax layers form viscous color fields of emotional, earthy tones.

“The reflective and subtly textured surfaces of her paintings interact with the viewer in the present moment. As one moves around these paintings the surface shifts, the colors change, light and dark succumb to each other,” wrote Scott Ashley, the Associate Director of Perimeter Gallery in Chicago. “Her works engage the viewer in their constant search for stillness.”

West Branch Gallery

Pozzi-Johnson makes these paintings “as a visual metaphor for the often ineffable experiences of the human heart.” Each layer of paint is like an experience. As these experiences build over time, they harmonize together in a dense skin of memory and identity. And it is in this sense that Pozzi-Johnson paints the human condition. Seen in this light, the rumbling texture, the changing colors, and the paintings as a whole are a powerful, compact mass of humanity.

Subtle, Not Subtle: Evocative Nuance” focuses on painting and sculpture by Marc Civitarese, Janis Pozzi-Johnson, Jonathan Prince, and Helen Shulman. Their work displays a delicate complexity that is easily overlooked by the casual viewer.

West Branch Gallery

Janis Pozzi-Johnson studied at the American Academy of Art, Loyola University, the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and the Alfred Adler Institute of Chicago. Her work has been exhibited internationally, including Brazil, Canada, and Switzerland, as well extensively in the Chicago area and across the U.S. She has curated over 20 exhibitions in Switzerland and at the Catholic Theological Union in Chicago. Her work is included in the collections of the Chicago Public Library, the Reformed Church of America and the Canton of Geneva, among others, as well as in private collections in North and South America, Africa, and Europe.

See more works but Janis Pozzi-Johnson in "Subtle, Not Subtle: Evocative Nuance," on view at West Branch Gallery Feb. 28th - Jun. 3rd. 

West Branch Gallery