Painting is like breathing to me. I am pulled in, to the work, every day. The process is a physical act. I connect to my body and to myself in a sort of visceral dance. The act of painting is unmediated by thought. It starts with a simple stroke or mark that leads to the next one in a continuous flow. Possibility and uncertainty are inherent to my practice. Always a play between anxiety, apprehension and, sometimes, when I get lucky, exhilaration. My language is color. I work with acrylic, house paint, oil, and pastels which I apply directly on to the surface and rework with a scraper, paper, and rarely, a brush.  


David Stephen Johnson (b. Pittsburgh, 1949) is an abstract painter based in Connecticut. He was awarded a scholarship to college as a star quarterback, playing for South Dakota State, and later earned his BA in Business Administration at the University of Minnesota, Carlton School of Business. He lived in Chicago in the 1970s and shared a studio space with a sculptor at the Chicago Art Institute. He fostered his love for art while developing a series of paintings for his first show at Riverside Gallery. While raising his family, he continued a successful career in advertising between Miami and New York for the prestigious agency Lord, Geller, Federico, Einstein. He embraced his self-taught path in painting, building a deliberately unpublished body of work studying color and shape, partly influenced by post-war abstract expressionists.


His natural athleticism and grace led him toward the great action painters. In 2017 he retired from the business to pursue his passion for painting. He joined The Silvermine Art Center in Connecticut, a prestigious institute for the arts created in 1908 by the sculptor Solon Borglum. Since then, he has participated in several juried shows, expanding his work to large-scale canvases. In 2019 he had his first solo show at Southport Galleries, CT and debuted at Miami Art Week with ArtBlend Gallery.


In 2020 he participated in the Intersect Aspen Art Fair, and the acclaimed Hamptons Virtual Art Fair. There he was selected as a featured artist at their fair this September. David has been invited to show works in the Galerie Sonia Monti in Paris in December, and his work has been selected to participate in the Contemporary Art Biennial of Buenos Aires, Argentina. In Madrid, Spain, he has been invited to show works in the Galeria Azur December, 2020.  The Van Gogh Art Gallery in Madrid will show his work at the International Contemporary Art Fair in Paris in January 2021. In the Spring of that year, David will present a solo booth at Art Expo New York on Pier 94 in Manhattan.