MFA Thesis Exhibit

Haley Nannig

Alfred-Düsseldorf Painting


Artist Statement

My art practice is a marriage between my interest in the materiality and possibilities of painting and the evolving relationships humans have with the natural world. My goal is to question the long history of depicting nature within the medium of painting, traditionally represented through cropped and framed illusionistic spaces using paint on two-dimensional surfaces, and how these images have been influenced as well as help shift and shape how humans have learned to see and perceive nature. I am interested in the varying understandings people have of the outside world, which I believe is directly connected to the lineage of how nature has been portrayed in religion, art, literature, and now social media. Using American Landscape Painting as a framework, questioning the point of view within my paintings, and experimenting with the installation of my work both in and outside of the gallery, I aim to simulate the overwhelming feeling of being within the natural world and manipulate a viewer’s experience in a space. Instead of gazing onto a landscape, I would suggest that it is much more important for humans to go into the trees, the water, the caves, and the fields and acknowledge their place in this larger system. What is most exciting to me is the multifacetedness of painting and I find myself walking the fine line between abstraction and representation, as well as straddling illusionistic space and objecthood.