Alan Johnston

8 Nov 2015 – 13 Dec 2015

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The Highland Institute for Contemporary Art is to host an exhibition by Alan Johnston, opening on Sunday 8 November, 2015, 2-5pm.


An exhibition preview, including a public discussion between Johnston and Murdo Macdonald, Professor of History of Scottish Art at University of Dundee, will be held at HICA on Saturday 7 November, also from 2-5pm.

Johnston is one of Britain’s leading geometric abstract artists. His works exhibit a concern with architecture, as itself, and as means to engage space. Responding to the architectural space of galleries through wall-drawings, Johnston develops a necessary reciprocity between the instinctual negotiations of momentary circumstance, through the production of small-scale and irregular pencil lines, and the formation, from these, of large-scale, planned and measured constructions.

The artist states that his works are an “ever-present engagement with the creation of shadow". These rectilinear constructions have also been suggested as ‘empty film screens’, as a space for our own responses and projections, which perhaps further suggests the audiences’ own ‘shadow’ as the effect of their influence in the engagement of the spaces of these works. The presence of the artist’s own ‘shadow’ might then further be speculated on, as in some ways the trace formed in the process of these works’ making.

The shifts of scale present in Johnston’s works present a dialogue between the micro and macro; their large-scale structures formed through small-scale and individual action. They thus prompt the viewer’s consideration of their own scale of experience, within this relation. In reflecting on the reality and physicality of both the micro and macro, they locate actions at our human-scale within a dialogue of possibilities between the infinitesimal and the environmental. The exhibition will include a wall drawing produced in response to the nature of the HICA space, and related works.

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Alan Johnston


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