Artist's Statement

The natural world is the source for my images. It is in the observing of the natural landscape and listening to the sounds of nature I find the colors and rhythms that shape my work.

For most of my life I have lived in urban settings. And my art reflected nature as I experienced it within the framework of urban sensibilities. But a move to rural Minnesota has challenged my relationship to the sky and land. I no longer have the security of closed and limited space; now there is unlimited space which offers expanded potential. This new connection to earth and sky has in turn affected my relationship to the world and to my art. I am a witness to the landscape surrounding my home. As a witness, I am involved with the details of the land and my emotional response to it.

To explore the unlimited visual and emotional possibilities of my new environment, I chose to work with a grid format for some of the paintings. This framework gave me the structure for exploring light, weather, my immediate surroundings, seasons and isolation. The grid has allowed me to move from the literal depiction of the landscape, sky, land, and horizon to a deeper exploration of the pieces that now form my life, helping me to find and begin to understand my place within this new, powerful and beautiful milieu.

My drawings are of the landscape I observe every day. The drawings have become a form of meditation. I respond, through them, to the spirit of the land, its stillness and the subtle rhythms of its forms.

Kirsten Johnson