Gregory L. Johnson
Wichita born and raised... My home.
I developed a career in auto collision repair starting in 1967 with a high school job in the neighborhood body shop. I stayed with body work to pay for college. I wanted to be a marine biologist, but that didn't work out. As I was still growing in my unintended career as a commission body-man, I mastered all aspects of collision repair (and really had seen it all). I started "Auto Body Complex" in 1979, and it survives today, with me and my son Webster. However, I have found, each success may open a void when a plateau is reached. In my case that void was a suppressed drive to bend my skills to art and the creation of sculpture. There is no lack of skill or creativity required to restore a crunched vehicle back to pre-wrecked condition. Creating and repairing are parallel with very different outcomes. To repair is problem solving to duplicate the original. To create is problem solving to an unknown and dynamic end.
In 1996 I added "Greg Johnson Sculpture" to my business, hoping to eventually replace collision repair with sculpture. In the 20 years since launching my sculpture dream my local reputation has bloomed, and my portfolio is bulging with unique creations in exciting locations. Along with many pieces in homes across the country, I now have one of my sculptures hanging in the new Bridgestone Firestone Corporate Headquarters named "Broach." Recently I have done some exciting work with outdoor sculptures. My piece, "Orchid GT" was awarded People's Choice in the first Sculpture WalkAbout. Of my current outdoor pieces I'm fondest of "Mosquito Hawk," the giant dragonfly at Botanica's Children's Garden. In this year’s Sculpture WalkAbout I my ten foot tall tornado “EF2” spins just south of Second Street on Mead.
That's it for now, on to new pieces.