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GLYNEISHA JOHNSON | ARTIST STATEMENT

Through the language of collage, I recreate domestic Black southern spaces I call and have called home in order to convey a nostalgia for a past that never existed. I use collage as a metaphor to describe the dislocated nature of Black history due to colonialism. In the same way that Black history is lost, found, and pieced back together with new elements from new generations; my work take on the same notion. Using inanimate objects, frottage methods on decorative artifacts that are synonymous with black culture, and prints of my afro, I recreate spaces like my grandmother’s kitchen and my mother’s den through colorful acrylic collage paper and methods of mark making in graphite. I also include decorative objects, such as African vases and religious artifacts to represent my family’s heritage and the role of incarceration, poverty, violence, and systematic oppression on black culture.

My work reflects the relationship between family and home, along with the desolate truths and overt absences that reside there, revealing the history of public and private space occupied by black people through what poet Elizabeth Alexander coins the “black interior.” A safe, creative, and healing space for black people beyond “the public face of stereotype and limited imagination.” A space that allows us to remember our history and “helps us envision what we are not meant to envision: complex black selves, real and enactable black power, rampant and unfetishized black beauty.”

BIO

Glyneisha Johnson (b. 1994, Dallas, TX) is a multimedia artist, currently living and working in Kansas City, MO.

Johnson completed her Bachelors of Fine Art in painting from the Kansas City Art Institute in 2017 and is a 2019 resident and recipient of the Drug Store Studio, Artist of Faith reward in Kansas City, MO. Johnson is a current summer artist in residence at Art Omi in Ghent, NY.

Her work has been exhibited in various solo and group exhibitions in the United States including but not limited to the Union For Contemporary Art, Omaha, NE; Spiva Center for the Arts, Joplin, MO; and HAW Contemporary, Kansas City, MO.

Johnson’s work is in the collection of the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art, Overland Park, Kansas.