Tuesday, August 30, 2011



Matt is my friend.  Matt is a prolific contemporary artist.  Matt is the boyfriend of jewelry
designer Win Bowers.  Matt is an oak of a man.  Matt is mellow.  Matt is humble.  Matt
is focused.  Matt is Private.  Matt has been down to the Panama homestead with Luke.  Matt lets me use his sandblaster.  Matt's studio was the site of the JK lookbook shoot on Sunday.  Matt has a one man show at Blum & Poe on September 10, 2011.  Matt Johnson is aces.

is pleased to announce   


September 10 - October 22, 2011
Opening reception: Saturday, September 10, 6-8pm

Blum & Poe is very pleased to present an exhibition of new work by Matt Johnson. This marks the artist's second solo show with the gallery.  

Johnson's new work transforms materials commonly found in art studios and construction sites, such as dust, drywall, stone and steel, into unexpected forms, exposing the scientific and spiritual potency of these seemingly humble objects. The six new sculptures freely traverse the myriad paths of human expression in physical manifestations.  

With the works Touch the Void (2011) and Pyramid of Dust (2011), Johnson subtly intervenes with matter found in the natural world. In Touch the Void, Johnson has meticulously carved and rendered the impression of his handprint on the face of a billion year old granite boulder. By leaving a physical mark, Johnson dates his contribution within the finite life of this stone, exposing man's ongoing impulse to alter his surroundings, even if only to leave evidence of his existence. In Pyramid of Dust, Johnson delicately balances notions of stability and instability, construction and destruction, through the creation of a four-sided temple built up from several months of collected studio dust. The work, appearing as if poised to crumble at the slightest shake, offers a bittersweet reminder of the temporality of the artistic gesture.  

Rising nine feet high and cast in bronze, the monumentally scaled Nuked Buddha (2011), assumes a serene pose, yet its warped and blasted torso suggests a more violent history. Inspired by documentary images taken in the aftermath of the Hiroshima bombing, this fictionalized artifact holds in suspension the velocity of human desecration alongside the endurance of an enlightened icon. In Star in a Jar (2011), Johnson illuminates a trapped light bulb within a Mason jar, with no visible electrical charge present.  The spark of creativity is held captive, as if by magic, to be treasured like a caught firefly in a child's grasp.  In the infinitely looping Trefoil I-Beam (2011) and the precariously leaning Dodecahedron (2011), Johnson creates "geometric readymades" from iconic architectural elements, such as steel and drywall. These familiar skeletal building materials give visual and tangible weight to the underlying mathematical ideas governing all physical structures.   

The span of Johnson's new work investigates the human desire to interact with the given world through science, mathematics, religion, art and architecture. Johnson's exploration points to our inherent need to connect with the cosmos, our desire to understand it, and our attempts to control it.

Matt Johnson (b. 1978, New York) lives and works in Los Angeles. He received his B.F.A. from Maryland Institute College of Art, Baltimore and his M.F.A from UCLA.  Johnson has exhibited widely in such international venues as: The Hammer Museum, Los Angeles (2005, 2009); The Mori Art Museum, Tokyo (2007); The Saatchi Gallery, London (2009); The Hydra Workshop, Hydra, Greece (2011).  Johnson was also included in the 2007 travelling exhibition, American Art in the 3rd Millennium, Astrup Fearnley, Oslo; traveled to Bard College, New York, NY; Serpentine Gallery, London; Reykjavik Art Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland; Galerie Rudolfinum, Prague, Czech Republic.


Monday, August 29, 2011



JK SS 2012 LOOKBOOK /// Closet Visit at the ShipYard

Director: Jeana Sohn
Starring: Hilary Walsh.
Executive Producer: Jesse Kamm.
Special Guest: Matt Johnson.
Jewelry:  Alyson Fox for Jesse Kamm
Shoes: Dieppa Restrepo
Wardrobe: Coco Cady.
Produced Design: Luke Brower


I am out of my mind excited right now.  It is going to be insanely beautiful....  Perhaps the most beautiful thing I ever created.  Besides Julien, of course.  Holy moly!!!

Saturday, August 27, 2011


I love my mom.  She is beautiful, funny, smart, and an inspiration.  She is a potter.  She makes beautiful, simple, functional pieces, of which I own many.  I just spent a week with her in Illinois.  Here are some snapshots of her studio.  I feel like the apple did not fall far from the tree... She is real deal man.  I am so glad she is mine.

Friday, August 26, 2011


I spent the last week in my hometown of Highland Illinois.  It is rural, it is quiet, it is beautiful, it is awesome.  More awesome than I remember.  Wide open spaces.  It was settled by my Swiss ancestors in 1837.

A little tour... the view from my bedroom window, my house, country roads, Hooks Bridge (home of many a road party), my school, and a big bus mosaic that I contributed to in 3rd grade... my tile was in the center of the rear wheel.

 A country girl I am.  Auf Wiedersehen!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Stylelikeu did a portrait of me and my world a month or so back.  It posted last week.  It is pretty cool.  I was VERY nervous for the filming.  I hate the way I sound on film... yikes.  We got into some topics I have never really shared with most... Enjoy:  http://stylelikeu.com/closets/jesse-kamm/#4

Tuesday, August 23, 2011


I was in my homeland this week.  
Illinois, baby!  
Home of corn and throwin' the pigskin.  
I am pretty damn good.

* Russ Smith is a hipsta.  Thanks for the pics.