The Gallery at University Lutheran Church
66 Winthrop Street Cambridge, MA 02138 (617) 876-3256

Notes, acrylic paint & medium on panels, 28” x 26”, 2013. Used by permission of the artist. All rights reserved.

Spaces Between the Splendor: Painting Encounter and Conquest

Bradford Johnson

May 10 - June 29, 2014

Gallery Hours

Opening Reception

Saturday, May 10, 4-8 pm

Artist’s Statement

Two of the best photographers I know tell me that I’m actually a filmmaker because I paint subjects with long involved backstories. Spaces Between the Splendor: Painting Encounter and Conquest is a body of work inspired from just such an involved cinemagraphic-like narrative.

What I find revelatory in painting an event documented on film is the recovery of neglected details and connections. Through the very material process of painting, a single story line becomes multifaceted. It’s details rendered into lush storyboards.

The Story: In 1957 five missionaries were slain in jungles of Ecuador attempting to convert a remote tribe. Their story was popularized by a large photo spread in LIFE Magazine and became brief media sensation. Some saw the five as faithful martyrs and others as unwitting participants in a long history of Amazonian exploitation.

Spaces Between the Splendor is a body of paintings based on photographs recovered at the missionary’s jungle encampment. It’s a study of the world they brought with them into the Amazon and the worlds they encountered there.

Bradford Johnson
Somerville, Massachusetts, 2014
Artist’s website