Resíduos | Gene Johnson | Anexo Lume


Any work of art –be it literature, music or visual arts– is a new weave of past quotations or experiences. Octavio Paz's "art of convergence" concept (Convergences, 1991) characterizes poetry as an intersection place of times, forms and spaces. The work of art is also a field for intertextuality insofar as it captures the voices that pass through collective memory, in existing texts, songs, photographs or experiences of space, appropriating these voices to create new meanings. In the artwork’s space, all kinds of relationships come together. It is above all an animated universe and, according to this perspective, it is able to catalyze the various social and cultural manifestations bringing to its interior the influence of thinkers, writers and philosophers, as well as the memories of various subjective impressions: from a Picasso’s painting to the design of a beermat on a bar table. In an attempt to embrace, almost in a chaotic way, the sensations and memories, good or bad, which we hold inside us, Carlos Drummond de Andrade writes in Residue:

From everything a little remained.
From my fear. From your disgust.
From stifled cries. From the rose
a little remained.
From everything a little remained:
from me; from you; from Abelard.
Hair on my sleeve,
from everything a little remained;
wind in my ears,
burbing, rumbling
from an upset stomach,
and small artifacts:
bell jar, honeycomb, revolver
cartridge, aspirin tablet.
… from everything a little always remains.
Sometimes a button. Sometimes a rat.

In Gene Johnson’s "Residues" exhibition, a little of the places where he lived remains: a little of New York, a little of Mexico City, São Paulo, and even Ilhabela. In the overlapping of paints, textures and colors, there are desires, lamentations, and urban ways transformed into geometries, collages and prints. On the same canvas, Gene's fascination with floors’ details, curiosity for staircases’ shapes, and passion for architecture live together harmoniously. In this amalgam of paints, cities, colors, memories and feelings, Johnson created his very own language –a visually abstract, fluent, flexible, and emotional one. His artworks do not pursue predetermined directions, but they exalt their very own processes and trails. They arise from the brushstrokes’ vibrations combined with the day-to-day putting themselves, in practice, against the overvaluation of the future and for the valorization of the moment in which every now is a beginning and an end.

Paulo Kassab Jr.

Gene Johnson | Resíduos

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