Johanna Karlsson: Scenes and Notes
Galerie Forsblom, August 19–September 18, 2022
Swedish artist Johanna Karlsson (b.1968), exhibiting in Finland now for the first time, builds dioramas, hidden inside which are startlingly detailed landscape studies. The artist uses copper and silver wire, paper, old newspapers, egg cartons, textiles, pigments and plaster in her artworks. She solders, shapes and paints the works. The artworks demand time from the viewer, not only from the artist. The work process is slow and requires meticulous attention to detail. The viewing experience calls for the same dedication.
Johanna Karlsson’s works inhabit the middle ground between sculpture and painting. The artist is not so much interested in colors, though, focusing more on the sculpture and letting the materials speak. Karlsson’s landscapes are not verdant, as grey, white and brown are the predominant colors. Karlsson creates precise glimpses of nature while also introducing elements with cultural context. The result is a landscape where personal interpretation blends with natural science. The artist does not highlight particular symbols or thematic tales in her natural studies, instead leaving them to the broader story of all birth and death. The landscapes are rugged, but the artist points out that the trees are not dead. They are simply waiting.
Johanna Karlsson graduated from the Royal Swedish Academy of Fine Arts in Stockholm in 1997. Karlsson’s work is found in collections such as the Moderna Museet in Stockholm, Sundsvall Museum in Sweden, and the Olbricht Collection in Germany. Th e artist lives and works in Stockholm.