Johanna Falzone was born in Dunedin, Florida and raised a few miles north in New Port Richey. She received a BFA in 2013 from Flagler College in St.Augustine, FL.
Growing up in the nineties, the influence of punk rock music, feminism, Nickelodeon cartoons, and Barbie took over Johanna’s world. These forces influenced her attraction to pretty imagery ranging from the grotesque to the overtly feminine with whimsical nods to childhood directing her creation of paintings, illustrations, poetry, films, short stories, and screenplays.
Johanna is also classically trained in ballet and modern dance. She attended Suzanne Farrell's Young Dancer's Workshop in 2007 and 2008; in addition, Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet School's 2008 Summer Program. She remains a fierce Winnipeg Jets fan and Tim Hortons iced coffee and donut lover.
Currently based out of Tampa/St.Augustine, FL
(An Extended Statement that encompasses the complete Portfolio)
My work comes from connections with popular culture, social issues, and personal experience. I manipulate portraiture through drawing and painting by combining people and ideas deeply rooted in the human condition. People are not alone--we all suffer, experience success, have vulnerabilities, and deserve humanity.
I identify with individuals who have struggled with physical and mental health issues and connect with them on spiritual, philosophical, social, and political levels. I exploit myself through self-portrait hybrids and comparisons to show there is not a difference between the diverse classes of society. Fictional characters also exhibit these parallel bonds, for this reason, they are represented in my work. All people are dehumanized for various issues which are deemed taboo by society, and they are stigmatized for their differences. I am a visual bridge for opening this uncomfortable yet preeminent discussion.
The human experience is also illustrated in forms of memory, nostalgia, and innocence through sleeping and lounging; our most vulnerable state where our minds are free to explore the depths of imagination. Sleeping and lounging are the states of rest where a person can let go of anxieties or enter into an alternate world, and are often utilized to escape or feel at ease. My drawings illustrate myself and others to create a literal and an opened-ended invitation for the viewer to contemplate the inner thoughts, dreams, and feelings of the subjects. The imagery also offers a recollection relationship, so people can connect with these familiar recreations and diversions. The past, present, and future all have a moment to open physiological correlations within the work.
I also revert to social issues and familial roots in bookmaking and drawing through extensive research. I exhibit experiences pertinent to women, create narratives for unknowns, while also visualising stories passed on through generations. My heritage connections show a family who are immigrants, and the traits and traditions we pass on enhancing the diverse culture of the United States.
My paintings, drawings and books hold their own specific qualities, but each reinforces the complexities of the human condition.
For Artist Statements on Individual Bodies of work, please request through email.