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Window into Houston: Anna Elise Johnson: Slantwise, Otherwise






Window into Houston: Anna Elise Johnson: Slantwise, Otherwise

 Window into Houston: Anna Elise Johnson: Slantwise, Otherwise

November 13, 2013 – January 29, 2014

Public Opening and Reception November 13, 6:30 – 8:30pm.

For Slantwise, Otherwise, Anna Elise Johnson introduces images of four international and influential public figures: Deng Xiaoping, Margaret Thatcher, Vladimir Lenin, and Ronald Reagan. Similarly posed and iconic, the subjects’ depictions appear as photographs and as monuments, suggesting their solid yet possibly indeterminate and unstable status. The work is mounted on Plexiglas panels made to fit each window frame and overlaid with a pattern of black stripes, which visually connects the individual images and introduces a sense of movement across the four window panes. The optical effect is heightened by the fact that the panels are leaning at an angle toward the street, forcing the viewer to reassess their position vis-à-vis the images and figures as they stand or walk in front of the windows.   

 Slantwise, Otherwise considers our relationship to historical knowledge construed through images and monuments of power. The work’s form disperses the governing authority of figures in our shared cultural consciousness by allowing their familiar images to simultaneously cohere and fall apart. Highlighting the act of seeing as an embodied activity reliant upon movement, Johnson puts the viewer in charge of deconstructing and reconstructing imagery and its possible memorialization. 

 Anna Elise Johnson earned an MFA from the University of Chicago in 2012 and a BFA in painting from Washington University in St. Louis in 2005. She is currently a Core Fellow at the Museum of Fine Arts Houston.

Window into Houston is made possible with generous support from Jim Petersen, Jr.

Located in downtown Houston and viewed from the street and sidewalk, Window into Houston highlights the most recent developments in Houston’s artistic landscape and reaches out to a broad and diverse audience to engage them in a dialogue about contemporary art made in Houston.