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Untitled #140, From the series Until the Kingdom Comes

Simen Johan

Until the Kingdom Comes

September 10, 2009–October 31, 2009

Artist's Reception

Thursday, September 10, 2009, 6:00–8:00 pm

Yossi Milo Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of new images and sculptures by Simen Johan, entitled Until the Kingdom Comes. The exhibition will open on Thursday, September 10, and close on Saturday, October 31, with a reception for the artist on Thursday, September 10, from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m.

In his ongoing series Until the Kingdom Comes, begun in 2004 and first shown at the gallery in 2006, Simen Johan depicts a natural world hovering between reality, fantasy and nightmare.  Merging traditional photographic techniques with digital methods, Johan’s images are crafted over time and may include a synthesis of landscapes from various geographical locations and animals photographed in captivity or in the wild.

An albino deer is camouflaged in a lattice of trees, shadow and light in one image; in another, a weeping willow is enshrined in an apocalyptic fog. Three of Johan’s recent sculptures incorporating taxidermy, insects and foliage into miniature ecosystems will also be included in the show.

In his work, Johan blurs the boundaries between the real and the unreal, re-imagining worlds that, much like our own, are forever a mystery. Majestic animals in fantasy landscapes are set in relief against a darker reality, one of absence and longing. The work addresses primal experiences, shaped by desires and fears—solitary paths towards imagined fulfillment.

Simen Johan’s work is included in the permanent collections of institutions such as the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; the Brooklyn Museum of Art; the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and the Cleveland Art Museum. He recently received a grant from The Pollock-Krasner Foundation. In 2010–11, work from the series Until the Kingdom Comes will be presented in solo exhibitions at the Frist Center of Art in Nashville, TN and at the Pollock Gallery at SMU, Meadows School of the Arts in Dallas, TX. His work has been featured in solo museum exhibitions at the Kunstnernes Hus in Oslo, Norway and the National Art Museum of Lithuania, and in group exhibitions at the George Eastman House, the International Center of Photography, the Australian Centre for Photography, the Neuberger Museum of Art and the University of Iowa Museum of Art. In 2003, Twin Palms published his monograph, Room to Play. Simen Johan was born in Kirkenes, Norway in 1973. He was raised in Sweden and has resided in New York City since 1992.