Nina Knoll

Whittier, AK 1 (2021)

Screenprint, 24.5” x 20”

Whittier, AK 5 (2022)

Screenprint on glass, wood, 3 3/8” x 25 1/2” x 19”

AK 2 (2022)

Screenprint on glass, wood, 2 1/2” x 25” x 19”

Whittier, AK 4 (2021)

Screenprint, 23” x 16”

Jay Cooke, MN (2022)

Screenprint, 6” x 4”

Artist Statement

How much can we really trust memories? Memory stems from imagination. Illusions invent narratives and redefine reality. Memory unwinds. Misleads. It takes what is clear and complicates it. It revives emotions attached to trauma. In my artwork, I analyze memory and memory retrieval. My analysis begins with self-inquiry, reading, and writing. In the early stages, I embrace the complexities and complications of introspection, and the creative process, as a whole. I lean into digression, dispersion, and fragmentation. From there, I develop a visual language by untangling my emotionally-charged, internal dialogue. The end-products are embroideries, screenprints, woodcuts, oil paintings, sculptures, and artist books.

I weave my passion for environmental science into my artwork. I intertwine both disciplines, and they form a mutually beneficial relationship. Scientific research builds the conceptual framework for much of my artwork and influences material choices. Artmaking challenges the traditional modes of knowledge exchange and considers the role of emotion in scientific research. When I merge research and visual storytelling, it creates an entry point for people to learn about science, regardless of prior knowledge. Merging the two has reached multiple scientific and artistic disciplines –– from an artist book about bioremediation to a screenprint on glass raising awareness for biodiversity loss in Minnesota. 

The power of my artwork lives in its raw, intimate, and open-ended narratives. They forge connections with unfamiliar places, recount childhood memories, document my self-growth, and offer advice to my younger self. They explore the interdependence of humanity and nature. They capture a twenty-something’s experience navigating eco-anxiety, or the dread of an increasingly uncertain future. In essence, my artwork exposes my inner world. Harnessing transparency and vulnerability introduces a sense of semi-permeability into my artwork, allowing others to step in and experience the world from my perspective.