Reflecting on her 2022 Lawndale Contemporary Art Center installation See Me, Ann “Sole Sister” Johnson is matter-a-fact about the intent: “This is about being seen. Seeing the women in the shadows.”
Incorporating experimental printmaking on found objects to produce “work that breathes conversation” and “question humanity,” Ann “Sole Sister” Johnson occupies that threshold between ancestral legacies and historical futures.
The artist, Ann Johnson, occupies a space—on, among, and with ancestral spirits—that is at once both “magical and distressing,” to bring forth artistic work that examines family, community, and Black Womanhood. In so doing, it interrogates what it means to survive in a world when that world itself “is too damn much.”
She presents us with an intricate photopolymer intaglio process “on cotton, leaves, feathers and infuses an assimilation of found objects with contemporary imagery.
With other poignant processes Johnson honors those women in the shadows and captures “layers and levels of womanhood” via a “transfer printmaking process on vintage and aged-metal ironing boards.”
She discerns and embraces the intimacies of family portraits and personal stories by rendering them legible against the surfaces of objects that hold symbolic and historical significance.
Johnson is currently exhibiting at Plains Art Museum in Fargo, ND. | Unseen Traces
About the Artist
Born in London, England, UK, and raised in Cheyenne, Wyoming, USA, Ann Johnson received a BS in Home Economics from Prairie View A&M University where she has taught for over 20 years. She earned an MA in Humanities (University of Houston-Clear Lake) as well as an MFA from the Academy of Art University (San Francisco) with a concentration in printmaking.
Johnson's work has been exhibited at The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, TX; The Museum of Printing History, Women and Their Work Gallery, Austin, TX; Claire Oliver Gallery in Harlem, NY; Project Row Houses, Houston, TX; Tisdale Beach Institute, Savannah, GA; Charles H. Wright Museum, Flint, MI; The Apex Museum, Atlanta, GA; The High Point Centre for Printmaking, MN; The Contemporary Art Museum Houston; and the California African American Art Museum located in Los Angeles, CA. She is represented by Hooks Epstein Galleries in Houston, TX, and Spillman Blackwell Fine Art in New Orleans, LA.
Sponsored by the School of Art and Design Visitors Committee and the Frances P. Rohlen Visiting Artists Fund/College of Fine and Applied Arts