Laufey Jonansen | New York City, U.S.A.
Artifact, 84 Orchard Street, New York, NY 10002
October 31st – November 4th, 2018
Artifact is pleased to announce a solo exhibition of paintings by an Icelandic artist Laufey Johansen. An opening reception for the artist will be held on Wednesday, October 31, from 6 to 8 PM.
Whether by inclusion of underwater scenes of nature or through monochromatic textured abstractions Laufey Johansen’s paintings have within them a holistic quality that overrides the particulars we see framed within the vision of each subject matter. There is a palpable and necessary condition of positive ambiguity and other-worldliness in the artist’s works, which pervades each scene and which brings it to an exquisitely high level of intelligibility. Intuition overrides the structure here, as it does color and form altogether, although these two aspects of creativity are satisfyingly applied in each of the artist’s works before us. There is that intangible “more” at play in these remarkable paintings whose very aura of mystery, so hard to pin down and express in words, is proof of its measure.
Laufey Johansen has nurtured essential qualities that have contributed to making of her art. Each of these aspects, in a sense, trans- forms into and reinforces the other and allows its companion qualities to take root. Each of these conditions, in effect, co-exists and is part of the very fabric of art making that the artist is engaged in.
The first quality that is immediately clear in the artist’s paintings is a result of the artist’s imposing capacity to regulate the forms and compositions so as to inspire a quality of “spiritual presence” that permeates her work. This is that essential vitality, which makes each painting come alive for the viewer.
Another aspect of Johansen’s art that gives it its authoritative character is the evident conjunction of opposites which is allowed to become manifest. This last aspect is a pre-condition of the first two aspects described above. This coniunctio oppositorum, as Carl Jung, describes it, allows a further condition to unfold, an enantiodromia, that is, a conversion of something into its opposite. The artist makes evident use of a process of automatism which is then superimposed with a set of conscious delineations which complete each work in order to make paintings that contain (seemingly) opposite energies, which, once combined, produce remarkably individuated images.
What is evident in all Laufey Johansen’s works, is the artist’s indispensable capacity to attain a certain emotional involvement while channeling the energies which only the artist can perceive. This ability combined with a vague suggestiveness and a not-known, give the spark of life to art. The artist’s work bespeaks of a particular expansion of the spirit which gives rise to this intense, inner realization. This deepening manifestation of an intrinsic potential of all matter is at the heart of her cultural efforts.
For more information and visuals please contact the gallery.
About the artist
Laufey was born in Reykjavík, Iceland 1968 and has been painting since 1994. Her black paintings are made in an extreme physical manner. In the process, she obsessively piles thick paint on to the already thinly painted canvas in a very spontaneous way, sometimes heavy or light, fast or slow, smooth or harsh. Although being impulsive in her painting method the result always some sort of unpredictable ornament pattern of thick paint on a smooth surface. Laufey uses black that is the sum of all colours to paint the unseen energy of the unknown and capture the vast spirit of being that runs through us all. She paints an impression of a world beyond our senses.