Medium

In his lush photographs, Simen Johan blends artificiality and naturalism, creating compositions intended to portray our experience of the world as a paradoxical combination of fabrication and direct observation. As he explains: “I strive to create tension and confuse the boundaries between opposing forces, such as beauty and brutality…or the familiar and the otherworldly, the natural and the artificial, the amusing and the eerie. I often feel like I am attempting to reconcile the irreconcilable as I explore the paradoxical nature of existence.” Merging traditional techniques with digital manipulation, Johan constructs complex photographic worlds that look like uncanny versions of our own. In “Until the Kingdom Comes” (begun 2005), he inserts previously photographed plants and animals into landscapes stitched together from images of natural vistas—a vision of nature, seen through our desires and delusions.

Selected exhibitions
2019
Simen JohanBrad Cushman Gallery, University of Arkansas
Conspiracy of RavensYossi Milo Gallery
2018
Until the Kingdom ComesFotografiska Museum
View all

Untitled #99, 2001

Digital C-print
10 × 10 in
25.4 × 25.4 cm
Edition of 50
.
US$1,000
Location
New York
Have a question? Visit our help center.
Medium

In his lush photographs, Simen Johan blends artificiality and naturalism, creating compositions intended to portray our experience of the world as a paradoxical combination of fabrication and direct observation. As he explains: “I strive to create tension and confuse the boundaries between opposing forces, such as beauty and brutality…or the familiar and the otherworldly, the natural and the artificial, the amusing and the eerie. I often feel like I am attempting to reconcile the irreconcilable as I explore the paradoxical nature of existence.” Merging traditional techniques with digital manipulation, Johan constructs complex photographic worlds that look like uncanny versions of our own. In “Until the Kingdom Comes” (begun 2005), he inserts previously photographed plants and animals into landscapes stitched together from images of natural vistas—a vision of nature, seen through our desires and delusions.

Selected exhibitions (3)
Other works by Simen Johan
Other works from Aperture Foundation
Related works
Related artists