SCHUNCK* presents Chris Johanson and Deanna Templeton

SCHUNCK* presents Chris Johanson and Deanna Templeton

Chris Johanson
The sound of energy in space, the space of energy in life
22 May – 15 August 2010

Deanna Templeton
Scratch my name on your arm
21 May – 15 August 2010

Bongerd 18, Heerlen
T 045-5772200
The Netherlands

Chris Johanson
The sound of energy in space, the space of energy in life
22 May – 15 August 2010

Like a veteran of the northern Californian punk and skating scene: this is the way in which artist Chris Johanson has been described by Aaron Rose, the man who took the initiative for the first study of Johansons work. As a teenager, Johanson was already using waste wood and paper for his raw, figurative drawings. Since then, he has diversified his oeuvre with three-dimensional conceptual works and abstract images. In work that is simultaneously comical and sinister, Chris Johanson comments on the predicament we face from our modern-day consumer society, where perilous issues, such as ‘self help’, psychotherapy and the spiritual craze, are sweeping the world.

Johanson’s abstract work, often using geometric forms and images which resemble starbursts, can be interpreted as a light-hearted, but urbane and refined commentary on Modernism. Entirely in keeping with the multi-disciplinary nature of SCHUNCK*, in The sound of energy in space, the space of energy in life, the artist presents both three-dimensional works, as well as music and drawings. It is an exhibition with a character that can be described as serene, reflective and perhaps even Buddhist-like.

For years Chris Johanson has been transforming day-to-day subject matter into simple stories in paintings that make bright, flat reference to illustration or folk art: The New York Times called their look “a down-on-its-luck, cheerfully abject cartoon style… reminiscent of artists like William Wegman, Raymond Pettibon and Sue Williams.”

The artist was born in suburban San Jose, California in 1968. He has no formal training in art, learning some technique by painting skateboards and houses. He moved to San Francisco, California’s Mission District in 1989, where he became a member of the local art community, initially drawing cartoons on lampposts and bathroom walls. In 2004 he bought a home and moved to Portland Oregon.”

Johanson achieved international fame after participating in 2002 Whitney Biennial exhibition. The Whitney Biennial is a biennial exhibition of contemporary American art, typically by young and lesser known artists, on display at the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, USA. The event began as an annual exhibition in 1932. The Whitney show is generally regarded as one of the leading shows in the art world, often setting or leading trends in contemporary art.

The next year Chris Johanson was one of winners of the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art’s “SFMOMA SECA Experimental Design Award.

The exhibition will be accompanied by a publication in the form of an LP, to be obtained in SCHUNCK*.

Deanna Templeton
Scratch my name on your arm
21 May – 15 August 2010

Black & white photographs

“What better way to remind yourself and simultaneously tell the world what you are feeling than to write it on your skin?” Ed Templeton

Deanna Templeton’s subjects are the scantily clad teenagers who unashamedly adorn their bodies en plein public with autographs, texts and logos; written, sprayed with the aid of templates, embossed or in the form of stickers. Many of the photographs in this book were taken by Templeton between 2004 and 2009 during successive US Opens. Over a number of years, she was able to document a remarkable form of body culture, there on the sands of Huntington Beach, which finds its origins in rituals that show a direct link with the rise of popular culture, in a cultural reality which is controlled by the mass media.

If Deanna Templeton’s photos show anything, then it demonstrates the blurred boundaries between wanting to belong to something and subjugating yourself to something, between a subjectivist and an objectivist body culture. There is always the zone of tension between free will which, on the one hand, impels the individual to have an autograph or tattoo added, either from a purely aesthetic motive or wanting to belong, and, on the other hand, the risk of being “subjugated” by the other person. The more recent shift in autography towards the application of business logos, by means of sprays or imprints, or in the form of stickers, summons up new questions about the cultural reality in which these rituals take place.

The exhibition is accompanied by a catalogue with texts by Ed Templeton and Stijn Huijts.

Check out Deanna’s blog.

Note for the editor

Contact: Carine Jamin, SCHUNCK* / +31 45 5772203

Image above:
Chris Johanson, b-wblanket, 2010



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