Michael St. John


collage and acrylic on canvas
48 x 36 x 1 1/2 inches

The confrontational style of artist Michael St. John combines found images and artifacts of popular culture into works filled with word play, social critiques, and homages to famous figures in art history. St. John paints the titular symbol in Flag onto strips of newspaper columns, barely covering the print with his wide brushstrokes of red, white, and blue. The symbol has obvious allusions to the work of Jasper Johns, a common reference in St. John’s work, but by presenting the flag upside down it stirs ideas of protest against the US, or more mundanely, to the logo of the series House of Cards. St. John’s inclusion of the white negative space on the bottom of the canvas allows the newspaper clippings to trail off into the void. After living and working in New York for many years, St. John moved to the Berkshires where he drew inspiration for his most recent exhibition, Country Life.