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When art, engineering, and spirituality merging sculptural works and installations, it
seems like a house full of odd bedfellows. But when the artist is Erick C.
Johnson, the results are both intriguing and beautiful. Born in 1950 in Denver,
Johnson earned degrees from Colorado State University and the University of
Illinois. He has exhibited widely and completed numerous public and private
commissions, from the early days of Denver’s Percent for Art Program, to
Pinnellas County Arts Commission in Florida. This artist comes naturally by his
interest in industrial materials, in his junkyard forays for found objects and
in his fascination on with the kinetic. Johnson’s sculpture remains some of
that quest, accompanied by the tension between the old and the new. His
fascination with chunks of old airplanes, engine parts and other bits of metal
and wood plays out in wall -mounted work, monumental floor pieces, and the
occasional construction that appears to pierce the building in which it is installed.
At times, he adds to the surface of a sculptural component, treating it in a
way that augments the existing texture, though some elements he leaves in their
found state. “While constructing a sculpture, he says,” I will l be surprised
by a form or object that is out of my attention on, and yet calls out to
me-something that deserves to be scrutinized and dissected.” That may be the
best way to sum up the intent of Johnson’s sculpture. A work can be taken as an
object with a story, a recombination of parts that becomes a different whole,
an exercise in line and volume and an odd delicacy. And finally, the viewer is
called upon to consider the meaning of value and of worth, when old trash
becomes new treasure.

Excerpts taken from the writings of Mary Voelz Chandler, art and architecture critic form the Rocky
Mountain News.
From the Book I am included in "Colorado Abstract Paintings and Sculpture" By Michael Paglia, art
critic for Westword, and Mary Voelz Chandler, art and architecture editor from the former Rocky
Mtn. News.
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