• Blanket

    Cigarillo Wrappers, Floss, Paint
    approx. 5'x6'  |  2020

  • Fake

    Bra Insert, Floss, Marker
    5" diameter  |  2020

  • What

    Bra Insert, Floss, Marker
    6" diameter  |  2020

  • Coping

    Various Food Packaging, Embroidery Thread
    approx. 12"x8"  |  2019

  • Dream

    Various Food Packaging, Mailing Envelope, Embroidery Thread
    approx. 11"x8"  |  2019

  • Scheme

    Various Food Packaging, Embroidery Thread
    approx. 9"x5"  |  2019

  • Where Do We Go

    Styrofoam, Paint
    8"x6"  |  2019

  • I Want

    Fabric, Paper, Pen, Embroidery Thread / A book from the love/lust story book series
    2"x4"  |  2018

  • We Borrow

    Photograph with photoshop overlay of block print and color blocking
    20"x15"  |  2016


Nashville, TN | Painting, Sculpture, Mixed Media, Photography, Printmaking, Installation

Courtney Adair Johnson is an artist and curator based in Nashville, TN. Her art practice works to create sustainable community through reuse awareness. She is interested in creating new ideas with art to generate awareness of our waste and consumption habits. Courtney has led reuse projects with Frist Center for the Visual Arts, Tennessee Craft and Springboard for the Arts (Fergus Falls). She is presently Gallery Director of Tennessee State University Art Department and Co-Builder of McGruder Social Practice Artist Residency (M-SPAR).

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My work balances on object making and awareness of my chosen medium, reuse. I source all of my materials. I bring mindfulness to discard to encourage and to teach reform of our trash.

I call myself a reuse artist.

I am interested in creating awareness of our waste through art, looking at what we consume and the throwaway, connecting with what goes through our hands.

I source my supplies, be it paint to the obscure sparkle on the street. I assemble, weave, and sew together what we use and abandon. Printing, bookmaking, painting, puppetry, assemblage, and walking are all used to promote reuse.

I begin by looking for the excess, how can we divert it, how can we use it differently. What can't be used, and why?

The material dictates my movement, how I fit things together, forms, shapes. I look for color and contradictions, layers, and mistakes in the building of my story. Unwanted drawings, candy wrappers, plastic throwaways, broken objects inspire new creations that translate into the mindfulness of what materials we consume and throw away.

By reflecting on our waste, we see that there has to be a better answer. Building community through waste awareness and art-making, we can make a more sustainable future.

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