Artist: Juliet Johnson
Exhibition: i thought i saw a windmill
Media: Photography, Video Installation, Sound
Gallery: CSULB School of Art, Gatov Gallery East
Juliet Johnson is an undergraduate student at CSULB who is working towards a Bachelors of Fine Arts in the Sculpture Program in the School of Art. Her current exhibit is a solo show where she explores ideas of memory, distractions, longing, and the balance of gravity.
Juliet’s exhibit consists of a video installation that combines a mixture of different textures. This was projected against a white wall and had what seemed like two layers. One layer was a collection of vibrant green tree branches that looked very full and luscious and moved with the wind. Another layer was a wall with boxes on it, in which the camera moved slightly in the scene. This movement made it so I could tell it was a video and not just a picture. Another part of here show is a rock that has the words not here written on it. Against another wall in her exhibition hangs photo of a man in the air. His background is another vibrantly green tree. The photo of the frame is missing its lower left corner and a piece of the photo is missing just under where the man is in the air. This piece doesn’t complete the photo but is replaced with a little yellow square within a white pentagon type shape. The final part of Juliet’s show is a passage that is projected on the wall right next to the partly framed photo.
Juliet’s art explores ideas of memory, distraction, longing, and gravity. Along with her video installation being projected on the wall, she has soft music playing in the background that is loud enough to drown out human voices. This is so memories and longing can easily be heard in ones mind when looking at the wall projection. The rock that lies on the floor also explores the idea of longing. As stated in Juliet’s statement, she asks if the rock wants to be somewhere else, as it was longing to be in another place. Peter’s Party, or the photograph that hangs on the wall is used as a way to express gravity being off. This is because the frame is missing its lower left corner and the edge of the picture is exposed. In her statement, she states that this exposure give the photo an “organic” feel. The passage on the wall is a letter to someone. It has random thoughts and also include a longing to wanting to continue to be on vacation. And include thoughts of distraction after coming back from vacation. This distraction is also shown in the randomness of the piece.
I really enjoyed i thought i saw a windmill because it made me question why certain things were different or absent from what I thought to be conventional art. Like how a whole photo could explore so much dynamic angles just with a missing corner. One little piece was missing from the frame and it set off all the gravity in the photo. The video installation on the wall had layered textures with a simple melody in the background. I really liked this piece because within all the complexity and complicated patterns, people could find peace of mind with a distracting melody to drown out voices. This reminded me of my everyday life. Because it is crazy and complicated and sometimes you can just stare at something that is complex like a vibrant tree with all its different characteristics and find peace of mind by drowning out society.