Dion Johnson is a Los Angeles based artist. His paintings combine and explore dynamic opposites: expansiveness and compression, surface and depth, and darkness and light. Gradient color fields are juxtaposed to and interwoven with planes of precise hardedge abstraction. These color fades are both intimate and vast – they may reflect internal moods with wandering thoughts and insightful realizations, or they may suggest vivid sunsets on Mercury or Mars with chemical skies and radiant perspectives. The hardedge shapes seem to reach up and stretch down; their elongated curves, interlocking contours, and bold colors allude to kinetic sensations and evolving environments.

 It’s something like shifting gears in a high-performance automobile, only smoother and swifter and, when you stand back and take in the complex rhythms that Johnson has orchestrated, defined by a kind of simultaneity that is not possible in race cars, whose engines have gears that must be moved through sequentially.

– David Pagel, ‘Abstract Painting in Los Angeles,’ Gallery Magazine, June 2017

Selected Solo Exhibitions


2018    ‘Feel the Sky, Ten Year Survey,’ Azusa Pacific University, Azusa, CA 

2017    ‘Color Chords,’ Western Project, Los Angeles, CA 

2016    ‘Optic Energy,’ Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas, TX

2015    ‘Luminous Trajectories,’ Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ 

            ‘Chromatic Momentum,’ De Buck Gallery, New York, NY 

2013    ‘Vivid Slipstream,’ Western Project, Los Angeles, CA

2012    ‘Velocity,’ De Buck Gallery, New York, NY

2011    ‘New Paintings,’ Marty Walker Gallery, Dallas, TX

‘Dion Johnson,’ Western Project, Los Angeles, CA   

2009    ‘Brilliant Frequencies,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

            ‘Shadows and Vistas,’ Project 210, Pasadena, CA

            ‘Twilight,’ Cypress College Fine Arts Gallery, Cypress, CA

2008    ’Isotope Series,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

2007    ‘Works on Paper’ Empathy Design Company, South Pasadena, CA

2005    ‘Radiance,’ Carl Berg Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

            ‘Continuous Transmission,’ Desiree’ Synder Gallery, Sarasota, FL

2004    ‘New Paintings: Project Room,’ Stephen Stux Gallery, New York, NY

            ‘Wow and Flutter,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

2002    ‘Popsicle Scenarios,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

            ‘Softer Frequencies,’ Richard Heller Gallery, Santa Monica, CA

2001    ‘Paintings,’ Bill Maynes Gallery, New York, NY

2000    ‘Dion Johnson,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH 


Two-Person Exhibitions


2020    ‘Future Perfect, Dion Johnson & Christopher Pate,’ Modfellows Art Gallery, Nashville, TN  

2017    ‘Dion Johnson & David Skeens New Editions,’ Joseph Editions, Columbus, OH

2013    ‘Tripod, Kyla Hansen & Dion Johnson,’ Peggy Phelps Gallery Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA 


Selected group exhibitions  


2020    ‘L.A. Stories,’ Leo Castelli Gallery, Brenau University, Gainesville, GA

‘$25,000 x 18,’ Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ

2019    ‘Driving Forces,’ The Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, OH

            ‘Los Angeles Painting,’ Lancaster Museum of Art and History, Lancaster, CA

‘Summertime Blues,’ Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas, TX

‘Pulled in Brooklyn,’ International Print Center, New York, NY

            ‘Color Spectrum,’ Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ

2018    ‘Evolver,’ L. A. Louver, Venice, CA

            ‘Magic,’ Roberts Projects, Culver City, CA

            ‘Western Project – Werkartz Chinatown,’ Los Angeles, CA

‘For the Love of Painting,’ Contemporary Art Matters, Columbus, OH 

‘Inaugural Exhibition,’ Contemporary Art Matters, Columbus, OH  

2017    ‘LA Painting, Formalism to Street Art,’ curated by Andi Campognone, Bruno David Gallery, St. Louis, MO

‘Abstraction in the Singular: Part I,’ curated by Dr. Grant Vetter, Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ

‘Karl & Beverly Benjamin Fellowship in Art Recipients Exhibition’ Peggy Phelps Gallery Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA  

2016    ‘Manmade,’ Holly Johnson Gallery, Dallas, TX

‘Western Project @ Jaus,’ Jaus, Los Angeles, CA

            ‘Intent Fortuity,’ Jamie Brooks Fine Art, Costa Mesa, CA  

2015    ‘Surface to Edge,’ Cypress College Art Gallery, Cypress, CA 

2014    ‘NOWism,’ Pizzuti Collection, Columbus, OH 

            ‘Summer Selections,’ De Buck Gallery, New York, NY 

            ’11 Years – Anniversary Group Show,’ Western Project, Los Angeles, CA

            ‘6018 Wilshire,’ Edward Cella Art and Architecture, Los Angeles, CA 

2013    ‘Colormetry,’ Lancaster Museum of Art and History, Lancaster, CA

2012    ‘Summer Selections,’ De Buck Gallery, New York, NY 

2011    ‘About Paint,’ Carl Berg Projects, West Hollywood, CA

2010    ‘Set Theory,’ Torrance Art Museum, Torrance, CA

            ‘Construction Zone,’ Western Project, Los Angles, CA         

2009    ‘Western Project: The First Six Years,’ Western Project, Culver City, CA

            ‘Drawings,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

2008    ‘Plush,’ curated by Martin Durazo, Center for the Arts, Eagle Rock, Los Angeles, CA

2007    ‘Family Garden,’ curated by Shana Nys Dambrot, Elizabeth Paige Smith Atelier, Venice, CA

2006    ‘Dion Johnson, Sush Machida Gaikotsu & Kelly McCormick,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

2004    ‘Observations,’ Carl Berg Gallery, Los Angeles, CA

‘Reordering Reality: Collecting Contemporary Art,’ The Columbus Museum of Art, Columbus, OH

2003    ‘Fresh: Works on Paper, A Fifth Anniversary,’ James Kelly Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM 

‘Ten Years in Columbus, Part 1,’ Rebecca Ibel Gallery, Columbus, OH

2019    • Tonguette, Peter ‘Driving Forces,’ The Columbus Dispatch, November 17

2018    • Wood, Eve. ‘Magic at Roberts Projects,’ Art and Cake, August 10, online 

• Osberg, Annbel. ‘Gallery Rounds: Dion Johnson,’ Artillery, February 20, online

2017    • Pagel, David. ‘Abstract Painting in Los Angeles,’ Gallery Magazine, June, p. 18 ill

• Brewer, Gary. ‘Studio Visit: Dion Johnson, The Curvature of Light,’ Art and Cake, July, online

• Tonguette, Peter ‘Elegant, spare design transforms text into art,’ The Columbus DispatchFebruary 12, p. E5 ill

2016    • Carasso, Roberta. ‘Continuing and Recommended Exhibition,’ Art Scene, February, online

2015    • Vetter, Grant. ‘Dion Johnson at Bentley Gallery,’ The Arts Beacon, December, online

• Bridget, Gleeson. ‘Color in Motion: Dion Johnson’s Abstract Paintings of Light, Shape and Color,’ Artsy Editorial, January 8, online 

2013    • Nichols, Kimberly. ‘Colormetry Uses Color as Instigator,’ Droste Effect, February 25, p 44 ill 

• Frank , Peter. ‘Colormetery,’ Artillery, March 4, p. 112

• Bush, Bill. ‘The Opposites of Art,’ Huffington Post, June 10, online 

2012    • ‘The Radiant West Coast of Dion Johnson,’ LanciaTrendVisions.com, November 15, online

• Esterow, Milton. ‘The ARTnews 200 Top Collectors,’ ARTnews, Summer, p. 95 ill 

2011    • Fitzpatrick, Kyle. ‘Dion Johnson Melts Color,’ Los Angeles I’m Yours, December 20, online

• Lima, Benjamin. ‘Critic’s Pick,’ Art Forum, October, online

• Daichendt, G. James. ‘Continuing and Recommended Exhibition,’ Art Scene, September, online

• ‘Dion Johnson: New Paintings,’ Artweek.LA, August, online

2009    • Cohen, David. ‘Pic of the Fairs’ Artcritical, December 6, online 

            • Yates, Christopher A. ‘Two Views Challenge Senses,’ The Columbus DispatchDecember 9. p. E6 ill

2008    • Nys Dambrot, Shana. ‘Plush,’ Flavorpill Los Angles, November 7, online

2005    • Myers, Holly. ‘Around the Galleries,’ Los Angeles Times, December 2, p. E30 ill

2004    • Fryer-Kohles, Jeanne. ‘Painter crafts, mixed media into his personal diary,’ The Columbus Dispatch, January 25, p. D4

• Starker, Melissa. ‘Entering The Atmosphere,’ Alive, January 21, p. 21 ill

2003    • Fryer-Kohles, Jeanne. ‘Sextet’s Modern Pieces Sparkle,’ The Columbus DispatchApril 6. p.F4

2002    • Fryer-Kohles, Jeanne. ‘Childhood’s Mystery Seen in Sunny Visions,’ The Columbus Dispatch, March, p. G7

2001    • Johnson, Ken. ‘Bill Maynes Exhibition Review,’ The New York Times, October 19, p. E40

• Scheiber, Curtis. ‘Dion Johnson, Paintings That Dogs and Cats Can Understand,’ Dialogue, January/February, p. 28 (cover shot)

1998    • Hall, Jacqueline. ‘Images Won’t Stand Still,’ The Columbus Dispatch, December 6


2000    Master of Fine Arts, Claremont Graduate University, Claremont, CA 

1997    Bachelor of Fine Arts, The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH 

1996    Yale Norfolk Summer School of Music and Art, Norfolk, CT