Artist Profile

Nate Fors

Visual Artist Fellow (1999)

Exhibitions/Performances (2003, 2004, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2014)

Installation, Mixed Media, Multimedia, Painting, Video
Statement of Work

I don’t know what I am doing. I prefer that. I like to follow my nose. I start with an idea that inevitably morphs into something other than what I initially intended. As soon as I think I know what I am doing I am probably on the wrong track. As John Cage said, “Ideas are one thing and what happens is another.”

I give myself permission to shift gears when I feel it necessary. I do so in part to surprise myself . . . to learn something new. So in addition to using oil and enamel paint on canvas or wood I have adopted a variety of different materials and objects over time.

I believe that any artwork should first be taken at a strictly visual level, offering a sort of gut instinct or visceral impression. Music is the perfect analogy. Audiences normally don’t come to a piece of music with the “What does it mean?” question.

Ambiguity gives a work the depth or breadth that allows it to function as art, rather than as in math where a + b must = c. The equations are often less rational in the best artwork and there is frequently more than one right answer.

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Finding the thing I’m not looking for . . . recognizing the right mistake or failed experiment and salvaging it, that is what motivates me.

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