AARON JOHNSON

Upperplayground News

SWASHBUCKLING BRUSHSTROKES BY AARON JOHNSON

by Ariadna Zierold

aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground

Aaron Johnson has created two distinctive and wildly innovative approaches to painting: his well-known “reverse-painted acrylic polymer-peel” paintings and his sock paintings. The two bodies of work exist in counterpoint; meticulously layered Indian-miniaturesque details in his reverse-paintings starkly juxtapose the swashbuckling brushstrokes created by a clunky impasto of flung socks in his sock paintings.

aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground

Uniting his two modes of work is Johnsonʼs inimitable style, a painterly madness flowing forward from his influences of Goya, Peter Saul, Picasso, Ensor, Llyn Foulkes, and the Hairy Who. Johnson’s paintings are a delight of a seductive surface, garish color, and entangled flesh.

aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground

“In my paintings, I construct absurdist allegories featuring comic grotesque characters. Technically I believe in an experimental approach to painting that evolves the historical medium into a contemporary adaptation. I have developed two main modes of making paintings: reverse-painted acrylic polymer-peel paintings and sock paintings. The methods involve reverse-painting, meticulously detailed layers, and polymer peel transfer; or the opposite: building up a chunky impasto of old socks. My spectrum of interests ranges from socio-political critique on one end to existential human questions on the other; each individual painting will fall somewhere between those two poles.” Aaron Johnson

aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground aaron johnson, painting, paintings, painter, acrylic, polymer, sock paintings, sock, detailed, surreal, clunky, chunky, madness, upper playground