March 1, 2017, 4:39 p.m.
Q: You’re exhibiting with Gallery Final in Malmö. Tell us a bit about the work you’ll be showing?
I'll be showing a couple of portraits and still-lifes that continue to explore my general confusions in my life and portraying my emotions.
Q: Tell us about your artistic path, from childhood to the present day?
I started drawing early on, began painting in oils in High School and never stopped. My work has always served as a refuge to reflect on difficult emotions and to get some peace.
Q: What makes a good day in the studio?
A good day in the studio is one when I don't want to leave.
Q: Can you tell us about the titles you give your works? How important is it to set the tone this way?
Yeah. I am kind of impulsive. I also like the absurd sensibility. I make them up when I have finished a painting, and often it feels so right to the panting. But sometimes I just give them a number, a titel would be to much.
Q: Do you only paint women? Why are you interested in posing?
I do paint men but somehow my male-centric paintings are less interesting
Q: Do you have a favourite work, and, if so, why?
You mean my paintings? I don't really have one, it is often the latast one I have on the erisal. Or the one i haven't painted yet.
Q: Can you tell us a little about the materials you use, and why?
Oil paint on different supports depending on scale: Panel is a nice new support I've been experimenting with for smaller works. I use linen and syntet with oil on ground i do myself.
Q: In an age of Acrylic paint why do you use oil paints?
It's more beautiful don't you think? I love the tradition and craft of oil painting. The medium demands respect, dedication and patience.
Q: What do you listen to when painting?
Right now I'm deep into different podcasts and documentaries, I also listen to music of course, music can often influence me in different ways and change my painting a bit.
Q: Favorite living and deceased artist?
There are so many but John Currin and Caravaggio of course. And Swedish artist Ola Billgren he is also one of my absolute favourite all time artist.
Q: You've been working as an artist for many years. What advice would you give to younger artists just starting out?
Well, I've only been doing this kind of painting professionally for a few years so i don't think I've gone far enough to have any retrospection of value. I've made a lot of mistakes, too. I suppose the old clichés are all proving true, follow your bliss, to thine own self be true, work hard, and perhaps the most important, be wary of other's advice. Keep at it. Painting is not like riding a bicycle. Practice your art!
Q: Your work expresses an interesting juxtaposition between conventional composition and surrealist subjects. How and when did you hit on this combination?
Seemed natural to me to assimilate all things visual into my work; I want to be able to explore everything visual in the context of Old Masters' dynamic colour-mixing / luminosity principle. In addition to flora and fauna there is also now man-made and the abstract to draw from. A contemporary chimera is a complex thing.
Q: What has been the highlight of your career and why?
Finding a gallerist who let me be myself and supporting that. But the real peak will come soon. But I can't tell you about it right now.
Q: What's next for Henrik johansson?
Solo show coming up at Gallery Final Malmö the 26th of April 2017.
To Stay up to date on new work from Henrik johansson,
instagram: @henrikfinearts www.henrikjohansson.org
Interview by Robert Dent.