“On the Other Side: New Works by Carrie Johnson” on exhibit through August 31st in the Kortman Gallery

Rockford Art Museum curator Carrie Johnson has built an exhilarating and challenging career in the art world selecting and installing exhibitions, lecturing about art, and supporting and working with artists. She has now come to a time in her career where she crosses over to the artist side of the art world, culminating with her first solo gallery exhibition. “On the Other Side: New Works by Carrie Johnson” is now on display in the Kortman Gallery in downtown Rockford.

“After being in the art world for so long, I have felt a need to personally express myself creatively,” says Johnson. “I have been fortunate to be around the creative energy of other artists, who not only inspire, but encourage artistic expression. Now I feel like I’m running alongside or falling in with them.” 

Johnson’s bold abstract works are not only visually striking, but have an engaging tactile quality, a result of her use of textural materials blended with paint and other unconventional surfaces.

“My work primarily focuses on composition and texture,” writes Johnson.  “Although there is greater meaning to each mark that is executed, I prefer the viewer form their own narrative about the piece - translate the mark on their own. None of the paintings are organic. Quite the opposite actually. Each gesture is throughly thought out and very deliberate.”

The July 5th Kortman Gallery opening reception for Johnson’s exhibit featured a live performance of ambient music by guitarist Rick Zillhart followed by cool sounds from Dj BISU (aka Erik Olson).

“On the Other Side: New Works by Carrie Johnson” on exhibit through August 31st. The Kortman Gallery is located upstairs at J. R. Kortman Center for Design, 107 North Main Street in Downtown Rockford. For more information call 815-968-0123.