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Jeff Nachtigall

jeff-nachtigall-artst-at-gallery-merrick

Jeff Nachtigall's art practice spans 3 decades. His prolific, multi disciplinary approach embraces a variety of mediums including painting, drawing, sculpture, printmaking and photography as well as curating, writing and community-based interventions. As a first generation Canadian his work often explores identity, place and culture in a playful and subversive manner. He has exhibited widely across Canada and the United States, and his work can be found in numerous public, corporate and private collections.

After a number of years in Toronto and Montreal he has returned to his home province of Saskatchewan. Living in a small three-season cabin on Last Mountain Lake he finds himself surrounded by a way of life that is at once familiar and exotic.

In 2022 he was awarded the Queen Elizabeth II Platinum Jubilee Medal for his decades
long commitment to the Arts.

Artist Statement
Nachtigall's work examines cultural narratives, casually sifting through the banality of contemporary Zeitgeist. Playfulness often masks a subversive undertone that both mirrors and critiques the politics of our time.

His unapologetic approach is both sardonic and philosophical, firing a warning shot over the bow of ideological hegemony. A traumatic brain injury resulted in a disinhibition that has seen his work both celebrated and censored.

Formalism collides with a punk rock sensibility. His pop culture mash-ups explore the liminal space between the natural and built environment. The animal kingdom acts as our proxy, as his paintings are often devoid of the human figure, replaced by a colourful bestiary cavorting in fantastical landscapes that echo scenes from speculative fiction.

Pragmatism is key to his methodology as he employs an egalitarian approach to materials, subject matter, and mark making; disregarding and challenging traditional and historical art world hierarchy’s. These high and low art sensibilities converge resulting in non linear narratives that engage the viewer as an active participant, asking them to complete the conversation that the painting begins.