The results of Mark Johnson's creation look sort of like Peter Greenaway and Will Shortz staged a series of explosions in a type foundry. No, that's a good thing, as evidenced by Johnson's exhibition "Row Home" at Co-Lab's new N Space in the elegant lobby and offices of Nelsen Partners' architecture firm Downtown. Opened in time for the inaugural West Austin Studio Tour, the show boasts several large type-embellished paintings: complex and colorful mixed media works in which painted letters are patterned in cypherlike sequences to form messages on the canvas, message-resonant objects are part of the lexicographical tableau, and actual letter forms often extend on thin rods from the vertical plane to right in your face almost a meter outward. Intriguing and challenging in their arcane communications, the works are also instantly and lingeringly stunning in presentation. -By Wayne Alan Brenner


The Austin Chronicle, 'Row Home'/'Blood, Sweat, & Mostly Tears', 2012

CultureMap Austin, "Co-Lab launches first show, Row Home, at downtown N Space in time for WEST Studio Tour", 2012

ArtsAmerica, "Beat the Heat: A Summer Art Walking Tour of Austin", 2012

The Austinist, "Co-Lab Projects Launches N Space", 2012

Austin Chronicle, 'Fifth-Business' Debra Broz and Mark Johnson conflate and explode texts and images in their duo show", 2010

Cantanker Issue 10: Misinform