Uff De Gastalt | Nathanael Flink
New work by Nathanael Flink at Soo VAC
Nathanael Flink is reckless, at least in process when creating his paintings and sculptures. His intent is to defy expectations, inviting the viewer to question the validity of the frame, both in its physical and metaphorical context. Uff Da Gestalt is all about the surfaces without carefully defined corners.
Friluftsliv, a term coined by Norwegian playwright Henrik Ibsen, meaning “free air life” becomes a culturally specific sentiment for Flink. Speaking to how experiences in nature play into the breakdown of artifice. Another culturally significant aspect of that is the “freedom to roam” laws in Sweden and Norway that allow anyone to camp and explore private land, truly dispelling the concept that ownership of anything is inherent.
A lack of boundaries allows Flink to take risks and embrace the “push and pull” of pictorialism inspired by gestalt psychotherapeutic techniques. In other words question the perceived boundaries of what you see, push into the memory and extract ideas as emotions.
“Sometimes the physicality of my process pushes back, sometimes it exorcises. I like to build up layers within a field until a new personality emerges. Each successive wave is a transformation and a surprise. I often follow pathways without a terminus. What finally emerges is a synergy of previously failed metonymic relationships. Kinda like in real life.” –Nathanael Flink
Nathanael Flink was raised in St. Paul, Minnesota. He earned a BFA from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design in 1994. Flink has been the recipient of the Minnesota State Arts Board Fellowship (1999) and the Knight Arts Challenge Grant (2016). He has exhibited his work in Minnesota, Wisconsin, Vermont, New York, and South Korea.
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