Marianne Johnstad’s work is inspired by change; in the transition between light and darkness, between what is immediately visible and that which can be sensed only in deeper layers, in fluctuating moods and sensations.
She grew up by the North Sea and the lifeforms and cyclic motions of the ocean often still influence her works. In all aspects of her work, Johnstad immerses herself in a sensuous and experimenting dialogue with materials, colour and technique. Literally and philosophically, her work with layers are meditations of what is visible and what lies hidden to us in the dark, of beauty and the pain that we need contemplation and quietude to embrace.
It is a ceaseless source of artistic reflection. It is often a cyclical process, where Marianne Johnstad reworks discarded and damaged pieces of knit from other projects, and then out go them creates new works, where she hand dyes and changes the texture and expression of the original knit. Sometimes she mixes it with pieces knitted specifically for the project. Her aim is to contribute to contemporary art and textile with knitted objects and installations, and to broaden the conception of what knit is able to express when used in innovative ways.
Transparent knitted works hang from the ceiling in various shapes and sizes. Together with drawn sketches and handwritten reflections, their delicate and fragile presence makes your mind wander and invites you to open your senses and let yourself be moved. Johnstad is interested in art as a conversation partner and wants to refine the tactile language that connects the senses, the intellect and the spirit. She works continuously with the themes of greed and gratitude, fear and trust, impatience and patience. Some works filter into each other, others have parts that grow out, just as one emotion can grow out of another. The color spectrum moves in gentle and soft colors along with a few bright and dark colors.