When the doors swing open and welcome guests to Art Series Hotel Group’s first Queensland property in mid-September, the completion of The Johnson will be a salute to two of Australia’s most important players in modern art and architecture – Michael Johnson for which it is named and Karl Langer, who meticulously designed the building in 1967.
Binding these two champions across two eras is their borrowed inspiration from nature, texture, and timelessness. With rhythmic grid work seen throughout the concrete structural frame of the heritage listed building, half a decade later, the same usage of hypnotic horizontal and vertical bars can be seen in Johnson’s works which will be permanently housed in the communal areas and 83 suites of the boutique hotel.
Austrian born Langer and Sydney residing Johnson are both indebted to their time spent in Queensland. With a 10-year period spent in Townsville, Johnson took a dramatic shift in his work owing to the subtropical climate he experienced. Similarly, Langer’s work in Brisbane led to his significant influence on the evolution of Queensland architecture and many momentous urban design projects such as the site for the Sydney Opera House.
Similar to Langer’s love of harmoniously introducing landscape into his pioneering designs, Johnson has worked tirelessly with Art Series Hotel Group to restore high levels of daylight, outdoor spaces and raw materials to its interior look. The Johnson will forge its own unique identity in the Group, with a modern, monochromatic undertone that will allow for the vivid artwork on display to come alive.
The former ‘Main Roads Building’ is a significant example of Langer’s ideology to create spaces that are highly functional yet flexible, with the original intention for commercial, residential and public purpose. Following the three-year restoration, The Johnson will provide just that, with the expansive public forecourt reimagined with connected and inspiring spaces created for all to enjoy.
Guests to The Johnson will be offered the chance to get up close and personal to Johnson’s works, including ‘Armour 2008’, which reveals his highly gestural application of paint and his capacity to retain the liveliness of colour within his work. Heritage-listed artwork has also been restored, including ‘The Red Cube’, a large metal sculpture standing on the path in front of the property, commemorating its original opening and the ‘history of the wheel’ bronze sculpture. Visitors will be able to learn more about the encompassing art on the highly sought after art tours, in-room art channels and art libraries.
Upon completion of its design, Langer expressed the building was to be a ‘sculptural landmark’. 50 years on, the notion lives on with a celebrated synergy of rare, classic architectural features and contemporary, out of the ordinary interior design.
To celebrate Art Series Hotel Group have released an opening special rate for The Johnson, which is from $180 per night in a Studio Suite Balcony for all bookings from mid-September 2016. For bookings [email protected] or [email protected] or visit thejohnson.com.au