Living and working in his Wellington studio, Johnny Turner is largely self-taught. Inspiration arises from his beginnings, the passage of time and the reuse of materials drawn from deep within the earth as well as an ongoing fascination and research into sources as diverse as classical history, indigenous mythology and the Japanese aesthetic. He often reinvents classical forms with his contemporary interpretation, referencing history, memory and ancestral provenance within each work, creating works perfectly poised in space or emerging upwards from the earth.
Turner works with and against the notions of hardness, weight and coldness of marble and stone to bring out the soft detail and colouring of each unique piece – graduating grains, soft, speckled colourings and contrasting textures. The natural properties of each individual stone is retained and enhanced by allowing the form to ‘reveal itself’. Recently, flowering forms and cocoon shapes have emerged suggesting the release or flourishing of something.