Ashley Johnson

Ashley Johnson

Toronto, ON, Canada

About Ashley Johnson

I have an affinity for animals, growing up in a rural South African village surrounded by these sentient creatures. South Africa is synonymous with wildlife like elephants, rhino, lions and baboons. Parks protect species but poaching is rife and canned hunting persists.

The most pressing issue of our century is environmental degradation. My paintings are about oceanic, animal and human socio-environmental issues. Human society is alienated from animals. To reduce this, animals and environment could be amalgamated into human cultural experience; separations of 'identity' need to be 'loosened'.

My paintings require the overlay of various elements. Charcoal energy lines are swamped in a paint-staining process that introduces flowing forms. Lines delineating architectural space are superimposed over portions of representational imagery. Compositions are balanced yet retain duration. The goal is to make a complex, visually stimulating experience that will engage the imagination. I reduce the identity of pictorial elements to interlace the whole with a sense of fluidity that embraces ambiguity and contradiction.

I engage Indigenous poetic myths including the Kraken and Hydra aiming at a metaphorical rather than literal exposition of the environmental dilemma. The paintings need to live beyond the immediate polemic and be beautiful.

Education

1982 Bachelor of Arts in Fine Art, (BAFA) University of KwaZulu-Natal, Pietermaritzburg, South Africa

Events

2017 "Marginaux et Franc-tireurs", La Maison de la Culture Frontenac, Montreal, Oct 2017

Exhibitions

EXHIBITION HISTORY
2017 "Marginaux et Francs-tireurs", La Maison de la Culture Frontenac, Montreal, Oct 2017
2017 “Crimes Against Animality”, (solo) Headbones Gallery, Vernon BC, TBA
2015 “Loosening Identity”, Lecture and Exhibition, (solo) Articsok Gallery, Toronto, March
2015 Inspirazione Divino, Articsok Gallery, Toronto, Mar 19- April 25
2014 Summer Salon, Yumart Gallery, Toronto, July 26 – August 16
2014 Ubuntu, Articsok Gallery, Toronto, May - June
2014 Goat Song, Yumart Gallery, Toronto
2013 “mindFULLnest”, BREAL, Grow-Op, Gladstone Hotel, Toronto
2013 Auction: In Aid of Diane Victor, FADA Gallery, University of Johannesburg, SA
2013 Salonus Papyrus, Headbones Gallery, Vernon, BC, Dec 7 – Jan 4
2013 Toronto International Art Fair, De Luca Gallery, Toronto
2012 Paintslam #3, Fran Hill Gallery, Toronto
2010 Ashley Johnson Primal, Arts on Main, (solo) Gallery 111, Johannesburg, South Africa
2010 Toronto International Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2010 Papier 10 Contemporary Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
2009 Neopriest, Definitely Superior Gallery, Thunder Bay, Ontario, Canada
2009 Paper Salon & Slasher Sale, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2009 Toronto International Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2009 Bridge Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, New York City, USA
2008 Ashley Johnson Primal, (solo) Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2008 Pass the Buddha (Julie Oakes), Galerie Samuel Lallouz, Montreal, Quebec, Canada
2008 Pass the Buddha (Julie Oakes), The Museum of Northern History, Kirkland Lake, ON,
2008 Art Now Fair, Headbones Gallery, Room 111, South Seas Hotel, Miami, USA
2008 Toronto International Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2008 John B Aird Drawing Show, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2007 Lights on Bloor (Dyan Marie), Nuit Blanche, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2007 Toronto International Art Fair, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2007 Looking East, Lehmann & Leskiw Fine Art, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2007 Ethnic Convergence, Headbones Gallery, Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2006 New Canadians Without Borders, Varley Art Gallery, Unionville, Ontario, Canada
2005 Miniature show, Gordart Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
2005 Carfax Collection, Johannesburg, South Africa
2005 “Porn Again”, Merely Mortal Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
2004 The Cube, Celebration of Nine Years – Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
2003 The Stuffed Xmas show, Gordart Gallery, Johannesburg, South Africa
2003 The Cube I – IV, Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
2003 Gesondaar (Sinner), Aardklop Festival, Potchefstroom, South Africa
2002 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, Pretoria Art Museum, South Africa
2002 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, Oliewenhuis Art Museum, Bloemfontein
2002 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, Ann Bryant Gallery, East London, SA
2000 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, Angels Gate Cultural Center, San Pedro, USA
2000 Forces of Trauma and Powers of Healing, UNISA Art Gallery, Tshwane, South Africa
1999 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, University of Baja California, Tijuana, Mexico
1999 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, ArtShare Gallery, Los Angeles, USA
1999 Transmigrations: Rituals and Items, Dasart, Civic Theatre Gallery, Johannesburg, SA
1998 DASART draws the Line, Gallery 111 Johannesburg, South Africa
1998 Sacred Spaces, Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
1998 Nudes and Nakeds, Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
1998 Kempton Park Art Competition, Kempton Park (Top 100 finalist), South Africa
1998 Art Objects & Meditations, Gallery 111, Johannesburg South Africa
1997 DASART, Second Johannesburg Biennale, Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
1997 Kempton Park Art Competition, Kempton Park (Top 100 finalist), South Africa
1997 Group Spiral Music Production, Carfax, Johannesburg, South Africa
1997 Euro-virus II-V, Carfax, Johannesburg, SA
1997 A little Big Thing - Erotic Miniatures, Sally Thompson Gallery, Johannesburg, SA
1997 “No 4” Echoes pe