Erik Johansson

Swedish, 1985–present

Johansson, a Swedish engineer and photographer takes surrealism, a major movement of the 20 th century, to a new level with images of the artist laying down asphalt like a textile fabric (Go Your Own Road, 2008), a man climbing a ladder up through a liquid sky only to resurface in the sea elsewhere (All Above the Sky, 2017), or impossible 3D illusions of buildings (Under the Corner, 2017), he demonstrates his skills for crafting fantasy images with the help of digital technology.

Making no secret of the heavy use of Photoshop, he compiles “hundreds” of photos into mind-warping ideas that can be described as dreamscapes such as images like the giant scissor cutting through a red house and ripping the ground open (Deep Cuts, 2009), the dichotomy between horrid dreams and reality is depicted by a girl inside a room painted with blue skies, cotton-bud clouds and green grass, opening a window to reveal a dark, ominous sky of death.

“What takes most time in the production process is the planning,” according to Johansson. His wittiness helps him come up with surreal ideas, such as the dog-walk (Lazy Dog, 2007) with the dog suspended in the air by five colourful helium balloons.