Courtney Johnson


Courtney Johnson specializes in alternative process and experimental photography and is one of the leading scholars on the photographic cliché-verre technique. Her work has been featured in solo exhibitions in New York, Miami, San Francisco, and Richmond and is included in numerous permanent collections including the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston; University of Central Florida; Tuanku Fauziah Museum and Gallery, USM, Penang, Malaysia; Museum of Art Fort Lauderdale; and FOTOMUSEO, The National Museum of Photography in Bogotá, Colombia where Johnson’s work was featured in the 4th International Biennale of Photography: FOTOGRÁFICA BOGOTÁ 2011. Johnson earned her Bachelor of Fine Arts with Honors in Photography and Imaging from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts, and her Master of Fine Arts in Studio Art from the University of Miami. She was born in Houston in 1982 and has lived in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Mendham, New Jersey; Chattanooga, Tennessee; New York, New York; Richmond, Virginia; Miami, Florida; Oakland, California; and currently lives and works in Wilmington, North Carolina where she is an Assistant Professor of Photography in the Department of Art & Art History at the University of North Carolina Wilmington.

Artist Statement

Light Lure features underwater photographs taken with low-tech pinhole cameras constructed out of cookie tins, fishing line and waterproof tape. Pulled down by fishing weights, the pinhole cameras were lowered into the Atlantic Ocean off all 19 fishing piers along the North Carolina coast. The images capture the light, mystery, and exploration imbedded in the historic North Carolina coastal tradition. The Underwater Pinhole Photographs of North Carolina Piers was generously supported by a Charles L. Cahill Research Award.

Image credit: Courtney Johnson, Ocean Isle Beach Pier, 2012, Pigment print form underwater pinhole camera, 16 x 20 inches