Johnny Plastini


Rather than obsess over a clear vision of future image, I invite the elegant clumsiness that results between the interaction of the rational and the instinctual. Through dedicated material investigation, artistic intent easily becomes eclipsed by the commitment to explore content through pertinent natural phenomena, automatism and the orchestration of catalysts within vibrant matter. There exists a overarching umbrella of phenomenological inquiry in my work, which effectively fosters an open arena for pluralist ideology. When working with a printing press, I am able to partially abandon the direct expression of self and embrace the unpredictability and indirect nature of the printing process. I view printing not so much as a series of technical steps trapped within a passive reproductive machine, but rather as an opportunity to activate variables, which divests printmaking from the drone of duplication and engages intrinsically with alchemical processes inherent to the medium. When I make my own handmade paper, ink, paint, or forage for materials, I view it as an agential endeavor because each authentic material becomes just as important from a conceptual standpoint as what evolves pictorially. While the unconscious ‘id’ may conjure the idea or the ego may negotiate a particular vocalization, it is eventually the physical interaction with animate materials, which must communicate the aura of a tangible work of art. The constant reevaluation of this complex relationship is a major philosophical and conceptual underpinning to the work, requiring patience, dedication and trust through undoubted failure.


MFA – Printmaking

Tyler School of Art-Temple University, Philadelphia, PA

BA – Studio Art [Painting]

University of California-Santa Cruz, Santa Cruz, CA