Wiley Johnson is a 37-year-old self-taught artist from Raleigh, NC who has autism spectrum disorder. His mother, Joy Johnson, represents him by filling out applications, relaying his story and thoughts about his art, communicating with galleries, and everything else it takes to get his art out into the world. He paints in his home studio. Wiley began painting acrylic on canvas, abstract style as a hobby in 2009 after hospitalization for depression. Painting made him happy and gave him something to do when he was alone. He doesn’t drive so he was more isolated after his brother was killed in a motorcycle accident in 2011. He is influenced by his many walks on the Raleigh greenway trails, gallery visits, and a desire to experiment. He identifies with a statement by Vincent van Gogh “What would life be if we had no courage to attempt anything? Great things are not done by impulse, but by a series of small things brought together.”

Wiley began his transformation into an emerging artist in 2020. He had his first two solo exhibitions in 2020 and had paintings accepted into 4 juried gallery group shows. Wiley had his first solo exhibition in a gallery in 2021, was featured with one other artist at the opening of Charlotte Russell Contemporary Gallery in Raleigh, NC, and also participated in 4 juried gallery group shows. He received an Honorable Mention for his painting Burning at the Floyd Center for the Arts, Floyd, VA in a national juried call.

Giant reproductions of his paintings were installed by ArtLifting at Chase Bank in Durham and Sutton Square in Raleigh, NC in 2021. His paintings, prints, and scarves were also accepted into the NC Museum of Art Museum Store. Wiley is excited to begin 2022 by exhibiting at the Sertoma Arts Center and Artspace galleries in Raleigh, NC as well as the SunTrust Gallery in Durham, NC. Painting connects Wiley to his community and is his profession. He is honored to be featured in the North State Journal Feb. 2, 2022: https://nsjonline.com/article/2022/02/nc-artist-spotlight-wiley-johnson/ Prints of some of his paintings are available through ArtLifting.