MIKA JOHNSONis a multimedia artist, concentrating on designing virtual reality experiences. Johnson also directs AR projects, music videos, commercials, and fiction and documentary films. His most recent project “VRwandlung” is a virtual reality adaptation of Act I of Franz Kafka's "The Metamorphosis.” Long term projects include "The Amerikans” - a web series featuring 15 short documentaries - and his recently completed debut feature: “Confessions of a Box Man,” the first part in a trilogy.
Along with exhibiting his work internationally, Johnson has also presented, lectured, and taught workshops in Istanbul, Tokyo, Madrid, Hamburg, Kiev, Frankfurt, Leipzig, Weimar, Prague, and in North America. Based in Prague, Johnson teaches workshops and classes at FAMU International and Prague Film School. He is also a member of the New York City based trio MomenTech: a multiplatform experimental production studio devoted to transnational progressivism, post-humanism, neo-nomadism and futurism.
b. 1975, San Diego, California, USA
Based in Prague, Czech Republic
EDUCATION• Oberlin College. Oberlin, Ohio. B.A. Religious Studies. May 2000.
HONORS - AWARDS• Awarded Guest Lecturer and Affiliate Scholar status at Oberlin College. Sponsored by Cinema Studies Program. January 2010 – May 2014.
• Finalist at Sundance Institute’s Screenwriters Lab Competition, 2008, for feature length screenplay AMERIKA: a notebook in three parts.
• Invited to present at "Making Movies": a screening and lecture series hosted by Schweinfurth Memorial Art Center, New York. April 2008.
• Elected to Phi Beta Kappa, Oberlin College. May 1999.
• Awarded a two-year research grant by the Ronald E. McNair Post-Baccalaureate Achievement Program, Oberlin College. Summer: 1998 – 1999.
EMPLOYMENTInstructor, Film and TV School of the Academy of Performing Arts, Czech Republic. Fall 2018 - Present.
• Teach classes in directing and film grammar.
Instructor, Prague Film School, Czech Republic. Summer 2014 - Present.
• Teach classes in directing fiction, documentary, and film analysis.
• Teach workshops in Acting Program.
• Teach pre-visualization workshops for 2nd directing year program.
Creative Director, The Metamorphosis VR / VRwandlung, Czech Republic. 2017-2018.
• Adapted Act I of Franz Kafka's The Metamorphosis for HTC Vive virtual reality hardware.
• Created scripts for English and Czech translations.
• Directed actors in Czech, German, and English.
• Facilitated work between five artistic teams: animators, programmers, 3D artists, sound designer, and composer.
• Managed the project from pitch to completion, overseeing the work of 30 people.
Creative Director, Four very short lectures on Kafka, Czech Republic. 2017-2018.
• Conceived, staged, and directed four VR short lectures, written and performed by Reiner Stach.
Instructor, Anglo American University, Prague. Spring 2017.
• Taught Documentary Film Seminar focusing on history of non-fiction film.
Creative Director, Art-Practice, Oberlin, OH. Fall 2009 – Present.
• Directed all video content for official website, including fourteen short films.
• Worked with co-producer, graphic designer, writers, and web engineer to create interactive website, production blog, and independent video channel -- www.theamerikans.org
Instructor, Akron Digital Media Center (ADMC), Akron, OH. June 2010 – May 2012.
• Taught master classes in screenwriting, cinematography, and documentary filmmaking.
• Directed and edited documentaries, for web, on Akron-based non-profits, including Boxing Love and AKRON24.
Media Production, Freelance, NYC. March 2007 – December 2009.
• Worked as assistant director, casting director, and location scout on professional commercial shoots for Edit One (www.edit1.tv).
• Worked as a professional photographer (architectural, event, food, portrait).
Videographer, Guggenheim Museum, NYC. January 2008 – December 2009.
• Documented artistic performances by Yoko Ono, Merce Cunningham, Sophie Calle, Christopher Wheeldon, Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, and Ari Benjamin Meyers.
Videographer, Cai Studio, NYC. April 2008.
• Documented 68 works by Cai Guo-Qiang at I Want to Believe exhibition at Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum.
SKILLS• Extensive editing skills using Final Cut Pro and Adobe Premier.
• Extensive cinematography and still photography skills.
• Completed three feature length screenplays (Confessions of a Box Man, AMERIKA, The Secret of O).
• In depth knowledge of Film History, with emphasis on European Cinema.
INTERNSHIPSGeneral Assistant, Videoart Center Tokyo - www.vctokyo.org - Tokyo, Japan. January 2002 – September 2003.
• Subtitled videos, wrote abstracts, and created artist profiles in English.
• Helped translate materials from Japanese to English for exhibition catalogues.
• Wrote grants for Japanese video artists seeking funding or residencies abroad.