CV & contact

Johanna Bolton

Contact: johanna [at] johannabolton.com

Biography

Johanna Bolton is a Swedish artist living in London. She works mostly in 3D, often in combination with installation, photography and performance. Johanna received the 2021 Gilbert Bayes Award from the Royal Society of Sculptors, and has upcoming exhibitions in Italy, Portugal and the UK this year.

Johanna has participated in a number of group shows, events and residencies, and had her first solo show in 2018 at Borough Road Gallery. Recent projects include a residency at Kew Herbarium, a commission for the Bomberg Archive at London South Bank University and an exhibition at Gerlesborgs Konsthall in Sweden.

Artist Statement

I practice a ritual gathering of knowledge, a spiritual exercise finding coexistence of the sublime and the ridiculous through an honest awe at the complexity of the most banal matters.

I have made a study of the kinks and knots in elastic bands, patterns deformed by scrunching up paper and, most recently, the folds at the back of knees, a kind of modern day version of the fabric folds of marble statues. 

They are all archives of human presence and movement left behind in material form.

I work with 3D materials, photography and performance, in various combinations. Often performers are invited to interact with the objects or installations. This is sometimes part of the narrative, but also a way to investigate the shape relationship between sculptural and human forms. The resulting photographs are an important part of my practice.

I tend to work in series, with objects going through change. It follows a system, sometimes rational and sometimes intuitive. I am interested in the awkwardness of systematic investigations where the end point remains elusive. 

Whilst my practice is conceptual, it is important for me to work with materials; because the resistance I meet there charges the work with its own agency. 

In conjunction with the 3D and performance work, I also use the artistic research to make ephemera, publications and artist books.

Education

2011-2014 BA Fine Arts, Chelsea College of Art

2015-2020 Member of Alt-MFA

Solo Exhibition

2018

‘ARCHIVE: Reimagining the Borough Road Collection’, Borough Road Gallery, London

Group Exhibitions, Residencies, Performances and Events

2021

‘The Feuilleton: I Will Bear Witness’, Edicola Spoleto / MACRO in Rome, Italy. Curated by Dr Jo Melvin

‘Make Something That Makes You Feel Good’, Virtual Reality Private View, LUVA Gallery

Body Building, Small House Gallery, London

2020

Received the 2021Gilbert Bayes Award from Royal Society of Sculptors

Non Place Collective exhibition, Bath Fringe Arts Festival

2019

‘Att komma hem’, Gerlesborgs Konsthall, Sweden

Conditions Studio Programme 2019-2020

‘RE:FORM” event for Art Licks, EG-1 Project Space, London

‘Shutters!’, Arebyte Victoria, London

Kelder Gallery Residency (AltMFA), London

2018

David Bomberg Collection, Commission and Residency, London South Bank University (April- October 2018)

Koppel Project Gallery Summer Residency, London

‘This Ephemeral Matter’, Bath Fringe Arts Festival, Bath

‘This Might Be The Future’ (AltMFA), Guest Projects, London

2017

Kew Herbarium Residency (November 2017- February 2018)

‘Unknown Futures’ (AltMFA), Guest Projects, London

‘Emergency 2017’, Word of Warning, Manchester

‘Pre-sliced Orange Segments’, Light Eye Mind Gallery, London

‘Word Play’, Forest Gate Arts, London

eYEbAll presents ‘Position 2’, Project Space Wapping, London

‘Solutions’, Rotherhithe Beach Party, Art Licks Weekend

2016

‘The Observer Effect’, Hockney Gallery, Royal College of Art

‘The Other’ (RCA Feminist Society), Darwin Galleries, Royal College of Art

‘Circumbendibus’ (AltMFA), Guest Projects, London

‘PREFAB-Lab’, Bath Fringe Arts Festival, Bath

eYEbAll presents ‘Position 1′, Project Space Wapping, London

‘I TWANG’ performance at the Royal Academy, Burlington Gardens Festival

‘Elastic.’ Performative Art Research at the Nunnery Gallery, London

‘Multi-function’, online exhibition (AltMFA) GalleryELL, New York

‘States of Flux’ (AltMFA), Art Licks Weekend

‘Drawing Utopias,’ IKLECTIK Art Lab, London

2015

‘Off the shelf’, IKLECTIK Art Lab, London

‘The Motion of Matter’, The Rum Factory Project Space, London

2014

Chelsea College Degree Show

ING Discerning Eye

2013

‘Lactose 2’ image used to promote ‘Acrobat’ Short Film by Eduardo Menz, Canada

‘For Every Action there is an Equal and Opposite Reaction’, Westminster Reference Library

‘Editions’, Chelsea College Art Library, London

‘Joyless Unity’, Mori + Stein Gallery, Camberwell, London

Publications

‘What I talk about when I talk about my thoughts’, Group Publication and Event at TATE Britain 2012

‘The Study of Elastic Bands in R3 Euclidean Space’, Artist’s book (edition of 50), 2014

‘Circle or Oval?: Concepts, Non-identity and the Lifeworld’, Symposium: Material Others and Other Materialities, Informed Matters, IKLECTIK Labs 2016

Awards & Scholarships

2021 Gilbert Bayes Award from the Royal Society of Sculptors

Shortlisted for the ACME studio award 2014

Shortlisted for the Mead Scholarship 2013

Art works held in UAL Collection, and private collections

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