A Kansas City Art Institute graduate, Joha Bisone lives and works in Kansas City and has participated in numerous local exhibits, group shows and collaborations. Joha’s use of bright color and fluidity reflect a vibrancy and movement inspired by nature, while the combination of literal representations of wildlife and abstracted organic forms give her paintings a dreamlike quality.
Introduce yourself and describe your work.
Hello! My name is Joha Bisone and I am a painter living in Kansas City, MO. For the longest time I have worked in watercolor and graphite pencil, but recently discovered acrylic ink! I love to play around with bold color and washes and the inks emphasize that. My paintings tend to be pretty abstract, using bright color and organic forms to move the eye throughout. Every so often I get the urge to paint really realistic. Whether it’s a bird or a pattern from a colorful fish, I then try to merge it into my imaginative landscapes. Excitement is key. If I don’t feel a zing while working through it, then big changes have to happen! I hope I can give the viewer the experience of getting lost for a second, taken away to an otherworldly place filled with my interpretations of nature’s wonders.
Do you have a favorite or most inspirational place?
I grew up in Milwaukee, WI, close to Lake Michigan. The Lake was always such a special place for me. It was always fun collecting stones, feathers and driftwood and having peaceful moments alone with the water and taking trips with my sister to different areas more up north that were super secluded. It’s so beautiful! I also find New Mexico to be magical. I’ve been a few times now — road trips all throughout the state. Every time I’m like “I’m going to live here someday!”
Birds are a common subject in your work. Do they hold a special significance?
Birds have always been a thing since I was little. I don’t really know why! My oldest sister is obsessed with horses, me birds! My mom said she tried to get me to draw some other creatures when I was younger a few times and I wasn’t having that. I think maybe it’s a thing of comfort. They give me pleasure to look at for years and years now, hahaha! I would also have really vivid dreams as if I was looking out their eyes. Kinda weird. Now I’m like what does that mean?! They do come and go in my work. I guess now I’m curious if they appear when things are smooth sailing or when it’s tough and all you want to do is just fly away? Hmm…. I wonder.
What is your most important artistic tool? Is there something you can’t live without in your studio?
First and foremost, my super duper old Sanford ProTouch mechanical pencil! I’ve probably done a few billion hours of drawing with that thing. Also, a white charcoal pencil, a blender stick and extra eraser. I can’t live without color so yep, bring on the watercolors and inks!
Please list 5-10 books, movies and/or music from the Johnson County Library catalog that currently inspire you.
The Big Important Art Book (Now with Women) by Danielle Krysa - Showcasing Female artists! Yes!
The Sketchbook Project World Tour by Steven Peterman - Inspiring project! I love looking at all the drawings from all over the world. Pretty awesome and it inspires you to draw/make something!
Color Theory by Patti Mollica - Great to have around for reference/experiments.
Whole Food Cooking Every Day by Amy Chaplin - Lately wanting more healthy recipes, this is good.
Saladish by Ilene Rosen - more great dish ideas!