12:00 – 17:00




19.8 – 7.9.2023 | Gallery G12

Jonna Johansson’s body political paintings

In Jonna Johansson’s latest solo exhibition, The Room of One’s own, physicality and the painting event discuss

Visual artist Jonna Johansson presents her new paintings in her opening Gallery G12 exhibition, The Room of One’s own, where she shows how the art of painting has its own material-visual philosophy, with which the artist works. Recently, Johansson has been inspired by various things, such as Simone de Beauvoir’s (1908–1986) work The Second Sex (1949), pinup imagery, and acrylic and alkyd paint. The new paintings are based on the meeting and association of these different elements.

Johansson started a new way of painting a few years ago, where the body appears as an abstracted and massive color surface. In this way, he deals with the theme of physicality, which has fascinated him since the 1990s. The new works have a more pop art-like surface and drawing than before. Next to them, the artist brings the shine of alkyd and the splatters that celebrate surfaceness. The meeting of two worlds is a suitable way of working for Johansson, because he has been painting in several styles for a long time, which is why he can include more heterogeneous materials in his work. This way of working suits her, because the different techniques allow working on different aspects of physicality and feminist thinking.

Johansson’s art can be thought of as transcultural thinking, where different cultural ideas from different times are parallel to each other. Sometimes in the paintings, pinups come to the fore, and in other places, feminist thoughts and different traditions become allusively present. Everything is in motion, even though the works are still images and not narratives, they are nevertheless primarily located in material work that constantly observes and modifies itself. Working on one’s own artistic thinking is indeed one of the main features of Johansson’s art.

The name of the exhibition The Room of One’s own is a reference to the famous essay of the English writer Virginia Woolf (1882–1941) from 1929, in which she states that the position of women will not improve if they do not have their own space and money. For an artist, his own studio is a place where he can work, face everything related to creative work, both good and bad, and where he can be himself. My own room gives permission for this, so it is extremely important for an artist.

Johansson’s art shows how paintings form their own material and visual world, which opens up new and alternative perspectives on reality, bodies and identities. In picturesque reality, everything is possible, so it gives its viewers hope and belief that we can influence our own reality and find our own room.

Jonna Johansson has studied at the University of Brighton (BA) and the Academy of Fine Arts (KuM). He lives and works in Helsinki.

Sat 19 Aug 2023 – 07 Sep 2023 12:00 – 17:00



Annankatu 16,
00120 Helsinki