A Res Cogitans
by Todd Johnson LC '85
October 12 - November 15, 2012
Kristen Wigley-Fleming Fine Arts Gallery, Center for the Arts
Todd Johnson earned his BA in Art at Luther College and his MFA in Ceramics at Eastern Michigan University. He is currently an art instructor at The Webb School of Knoxville in Tennessee. His work has been widely exhibited and is held in the collections of the Archie Bray Foundation in Helena, Montana; the South Bend Regional Museum of Art in South Bend, Indiana; and The University of Tennessee in Knoxville. He has twice been awarded grants from the National Endowment for the Arts and also received a Fulbright Memorial Fund Scholarship for travel to Japan.
“The show’s title, a res cogitans, is Latin for “a thinking thing,” and is very much what I find art to be. As a middle school art teacher, my workday reality involves sharing the images and ideas of other highly regarded artists with my students. In the studio, it seems only natural that this daily digest would inform my own art practice. Indeed, the thoughts of other artists and critics are reflected in my thinking, and they give visual form to the work you see here; some celebratory, some critical. Art does not consume me, however, for I am still husband, father, son; and autobiography too is an essential ingredient of my oeuvre. In the end, I want my work to honestly and cogently represent me, however flawed; I want my art to be a “thinking thing.”