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Get to Know Krista Johnson, Ian Tan Gallery’s Artist of the Month for February

Family Heirlooms (2023), Oil on Canvas, 60×60″, 2023

The Goods from Ian Tan Gallery

Vancouver, BC | In this new monthly series, the Ian Tan Gallery highlights one exhibiting artist or artist they represent, by asking them to answer a short four-question interview designed to introduce them to Scout readers.

Meet Krista Johnson, Ian Tan Gallery’s feature artist for the month of February. Johnson’s series of new paintings, Borrowed Gardens is currently on display in the gallery until Tuesday, February 28th.

Please (briefly) introduce yourself. Who are you, where do you live, and what is your medium?

My name is Krista Johnson. I am a Vancouver based visual artist working predominantly with oil paint.

We know it’s hard to pick a favourite, but if you had to choose one piece from the works you have at Ian Tan Gallery to best represent your style and practice overall, which would it be and why?

Always hard to pick a favourite. Each of them have elements that I love, but I particularly like Family Heirlooms because I think it shows a lovely balance between my favourite subject, some kind of wild garden, and those interesting man-made containments (like a fence or a window) which can often work as a compelling frame for nature. In this piece, I love how these two elements overlap and I like the visual distinctions in both their colours and shapes.

If you could display your art in any building, establishment, or other place in Vancouver (not a gallery), where would you choose?

I would choose to have a large scale painting in a hospital, like VGH. These spaces, often with generous atriums and lots of natural light, can accommodate large paintings and bright splashes of colour. Also, I like the idea that the healing qualities of art might be of help to people.

Art is a visual experience, but I’d like to challenge you to describe yours using the less obvious senses: sound, taste, smell and feeling.

What a wonderful challenge. In Borrowed Gardens, I hope to portray, all at once, the energy and stillness of these places I’ve examined. The sounds of chirping birds and buzzing bees merge and blend with the hum of traffic and construction in a city, which is constantly moving. The smell of thick, glossy foliage and dry leaves mingle with the velvet sweet scent of rose petals and rich, heavy, showy hydrangea blooms. There is a feeling of nostalgia from childhood gardens and the familiar fragrances of clover, spice and citrus, even near busy streets.

View more of Krista Johnson’s artwork online here.

Neighbourhood: South Granville
2655 Granville St.

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