I have an ongoing interest in the intermingling of a mediating hand with the reclamations made by the forces of nature. Many of my works involve heavily repeated elements—a simple form or action repeated until a mutation unfolds. The repetitive process, whether making the same mark with a pencil or piercing a thousand holes, becomes a meditation for me until I reach a physical limitation. I am also continually trying to push the boundaries of what I can create out of common substances, working to let the materials direct the movements of the process and reveal their most essential, and often unseen, nature. Some of the most mundane materials unfold in remarkable ways when given the opportunity—charcoal powder becomes a sooty waterfall, carborundum discloses patterns of sound and a reflective surface trembles to a visible heartbeat—all of which are able to transcend their ordinary origin. I am fascinated by meditative, obsessive mark making and forcing seemingly organic forms out of materials. The center of my work lies in compounding organic forms and exploiting the dynamism of my materials. Most of my pieces are highly formalist which leaves the audience room to have their own space of meditation and exploration into the works, extrapolating meaning and creating associations through their own eyes and mental filters.
I would like my works to provide an environment of reflection, in a manner that addresses the transference of time and moments of poetic clarity revealed by the abstract movements of nature. What can we see when the white noise of technology is returned to nature as an extension of, and a new apparatus for, sight? What is the new sublime of our era?
Nika Blasser presented her MFA thesis exhibition, Emergence, at the University of Alberta (Edmonton, AB, Canada) from December 2012 through January 2013. Her artwork generates circumstances that reveal and draw attention to the natural phenomena that surrounds us and often goes unnoticed in our everyday lives. Working with a broad range of media, Blasser explores the possibilities of each material and how they may be best exploited to generate quiet, pensive examinations of our surroundings. Blasser’s line of visual inquiry carefully combines often mundane materials, with light, air, water, or sound, and transposes the work into an exquisitely reflective consideration on our environment.
Blasser was born in Portland, Oregon, and obtained her bachelor’s degree in Painting, Drawing and Printmaking from Portland State University in 2004. In 2010 she moved to Alberta to pursue graduate studies in Drawing and Intermedia at the University of Alberta.