In 1995 in Phoenix Arizona I became a part of a long established co-op gallery called MARS. There I would meet a quirky woman with a British accent and a voracious drive to make artwork. Rose Johnson was one of those rare individuals that simply worked to embody a world where she could make art. I was struck that she lived as cheaply as she could so that she could devote her life to her passion. Rose’s objective was simply to make art. I found her to be amazingly prolific in her production, and as she continued to create work her style and technique got better and better.
Rose would move to Bisbee Arizona several years after I met her and found the old mining town breathe a new life into her work. While recently there I found myself very sentimental visiting several murals that grace the walls of the town; thinking about her often as I walked the streets.
A year ago on May 31st Rose was killed tragically at age 48. While in Bali she died due to ingesting a drink laced with methanol (wood alcohol); 28 people in all died in the senseless poisoning. She is missed. I found Rose to have a kind-heart and a sincerity as she negotiated her life and hopes through the imagery she created.
You can read more about her on these sites:
Thank you Rose for all the art.