Opening reception: April 5, 6 – 8 pm
Octavia Art Gallery is pleased to present A Voyage, an exhibition of new mixed media works by artist Nall. Over a successful 45-year career, Nall has garnered both regional and international attention with his sprawling body of work that includes painting, mosaic, sculpture, etching, costume and set design, and porcelain.
A Southern artist from Alabama, Nall attended L’Ecole des Beaux Arts in Paris in the 1970s. Nall has drawn inspiration from, and studied with, his mentor Salvador Dalí, and throughout his career has also been influenced by American psychedelic art, fauvism, impressionism and Japanese wash drawings. His current works represent a fusion of his Southern roots and the contemporary stylism of modern Europe.
In this exhibition, Nall presents a diverse range of work that navigates a variety of subject matter, including landscapes from the Southern United States, Mexico, France, Switzerland, Turkey, India and Italy, floral imagery, and equestrian and polo motifs. Nall’s works incorporate rich symbolism and surrealism to explore thematic concepts such as religion, politics, sex, mythology, the natural world, and cultural diversity. Because of the artist’s sumptuous, beautiful, and Baroque handling of his subject matter, there is often complex meaning to be found hidden just beneath the surface of his visually dense works. To investigate these broad and overarching themes, Nall typically utilizes several techniques, processes and media to create each work. Often starting with a drawing or print, Nall then constructs elaborate frameworks for each image out of driftwood, mosaic tile, and found objects, so that the frame becomes an integral component of the overall piece. Similar to Robert Rauschenberg’s Combine paintings, Nall’s method blurs the line between the two dimensional lexicon of drawing and painting and the three-dimensionality of sculpture, so that his works become a kind of hybrid through which to best present his ideas.
Nall lives and works between Fairhope, Alabama, Monte Carlo, Monaco and Vence, France. He received a BA in Art, Political Science and Psychology from the University of Alabama and studied art at L’Ecole des Beaux Arts. Nall and his work have been acclaimed by CNN, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, Time Magazine, the Italian Republica, the French La Figaro, and The LA Times. In addition to his artwork, Nall maintains the N.A.L.L. Art Association in Vence, France. The institute trains and educates young artists, many of whom are recovering from alcohol, drugs and 21st century abuses.