Johanna Stickland


Johanna Stickland is a Canadian born, self-taught painter and photographer based in Portugal.

Her work focuses on the female body and femininity and has been featured in publications such as EXIT, Juxtapoz, Vision China, Paulette and Heavy Metal Magazine. Johanna's paintings and photographs are held in private collections in Canada, the United States, Australia, France, the United Kingdom, Austria, Netherlands and Germany.

What was your latest book discovery? What are your favorite books of all time?

The last book I read was Veronica by Mary Gaitskill. She is one of my favorite writers, I love her short story collection Bad Behavior. I became obsessed with Carmen Maria Machado a few years ago after reading Her Body and Other Parties, the stories are sensual and strange they feel like waking up from a dream. Some of my other favorite writers are Clarice Lispector, Anne Carsen, Raymond Carver, Denis Johnson. I tend to be drawn to women writers, but one of my favorite books of all time is Fat City by Leonard Gardner, a pretty masculine book about two young boxers.

Most visited blogs, websites?

Before I fall asleep I read the subreddit r/unresolvedmysteries, which can sometimes give me strange dreams. I'd like to say I visit art/culture websites but I don't really. I look at Bon Appétit Magazine website for recipe inspiration because I cook a lot.

What apps do you use the most and why?

Instagram - I like to share my work there, find inspiration and collect images, watch funny videos, keep in touch with friends. It can be a bit of a rabbit hole, so I try to use it more surface level and not let it lead me to compare and despair. I use Spotify to listen to podcasts and painting playlists.

Whats currently on your playlist?

Hot Boys by Freddie Gibbs 
I Want You by David Lynch
Filth Pig by Ministry
Right by David Bowie
One Mo'Gin by D'Angelo
Jealous Guy by Roxy Music
To Carry The Seeds of Death Within Me by The Body
The Great Dying by Red Rice
Pussy on Repeat by Spillage Village
Générique by Miles Davis

What records would you recommend to hear?

Voodoo by D'Angelo is a good one. And my husbands - a musician/composer for movies - his new album Red Rice.

Fresh movie finds? What films do you think everybody should watch?

I love the documentary Crumb, it's one of my favorites. Some other films that come to mind that I like are Don't Look Now, Fish Tank, Mandy, The Skin I Live In, Happiness, My Sassy Girl, Amores Perros, Showgirls. I saw Capernaum recently and it was pretty mind blowing.


Which artists working today do you admire most?

Huma Bhabha - her sculptures really move me. I'm inspired by the paintings of Genieve Figgis, they are funny and magical at the same time, which is hard to do. I love Marilyn Minter.

What are some of your tv top tips right now?

I love a good show. The classics like Sopranos and The Wire of course. Also Fleabag, Killing Eve, 30 Rock, Forensic Files, Peep Show, Toast of London, 90 Day Fiance.

Who are you following?

@houseoftheodora (Instagram)
@jerrysaltz (Instagram )
The Hot Mess Comedy Hour (Podcast)

What tools do you use in your work?

My laptop is old and great but on its last legs. So I use that, I always pray that it turns on. I have Photoshop which I enjoy playing around with.

What magazines / newspapers do you read regularly?

Zero, which is sad but probably common these days. I used to love buying magazines, it was such a treat but I never do anymore. Also they are expensive!

What are your favorite gadgets?

I am terrible with gadgets. I sleep with headphones in and since I toss around so much during the night, they inevitably get destroyed. I don't trust myself with gadgets.