As a visual artist, Kirsten Johannsen works across disciplines. In her artworks she uses analogue and digital media such as video, sound, computer-based techniques and photography. The results are site-specific installations, sculptures and interactive environments that actively involve the viewer in the artistic concept. The content is concentrated on space as the carrier of an individual localization, the subjective and objective perception of space and time, as well as on the representation of historical and contemporary natural spaces.
Johannsen received a doctorate from the University of Plymouth, UK in 2012. In her dissertation she explored artistic practices in extreme spatial environments using human space travel as an example. She examined the interfaces of interdisciplinary collaborations and questioned the demands placed on researching artists in this scientific context.
Her works are represented in the collections of the ZKM | Zentrum für Kunst und Medientechnologie, Medienmuseum Karlsruhe, the Neue Nationalgalerie Berlin and the Neuer Berliner Kunstverein. In 2009 she exhibited the participative installation »Constructing Paradise« during the BUGA Bundesgartenschau in Schwerin. For this work, she developed seven place concepts as a do-it-yourself workshop. Each concept offers building instructions and props that can be individually implemented and inhabited by the user.
Johannsen studied scenography at the Staatliche Akademie der Künste Stuttgart and visual communication at the Universität der Künste Berlin (Meisterschülerin). Parallel to her artistic activities she has taught at the Bauhaus University Weimar, the Universität der Künste, the Zürcher Hochschule der Künste and the UE University of Applied Sciences Europe, Berlin.
Kirsten Johannsen lives and works in Berlin.