Nicholas Johnson (b. 1982, Hawaii) is a London-based artist who approaches plant form as a subject of metaphysical enquiry. He has investigated this subject for over ten years with a variety of optical and conceptual variations. With methods as diverse as music transposed from thorns on rose branches, vibratory acid palettes, fractal repetition of plant form, and recently, 3D animation. It is Johnson’s ongoing thesis that there is something innate in botanical form that is inextricably linked to ours (human) and other life’s perceptual mechanics.

Johnson studied philosophy before completing an MA in painting at the Royal College of Art, London, in 2014. He studies the emerging science of plant sentience, the nonhuman turn in contemporary theory of systems and ecology, and these in connection with ethnobotanical accounts of ancient indigenous knowledge and mythologies. Their paintings are underpinned by an idiosyncratic academicism, most often recorded in encyclopaedic texts and catalogues that accompany exhibitions of his work.

Selected Exhibitions

NABO Art Stage, Visuals. Brussels (2023); Plus One, Antwerp, Belgium (2022); Peter von Kant, London (2022); The Edit, Dubai; Artvisor, London (2019); Walker Art Museum, Liverpool (2018); Flat Time House, London (2016); Art Brussels, Belgium (2018); Montoro 12 Contemporary, Rome (2016); Podium, Oslo (2016); House of Egorn, London (2016); The Catlin Prize, London/Newcastle Project Space, London (2015); The Averard Hotel, Slate Projects/Averard Hotel, London (2014).


Interested in Nicholas Johnson’s work?