“San Francisco and the West Coast are magical places that inspire and enrich in different ways, but I find most of my ideas come from walking and thinking and reading and listening to music… All these works of mine – paintings, prints, posters, flyers, etc. – are almost notes to myself. I am not always optimistic or positive. I’m often angry or frustrated or tired. A lot of these pieces are reminders to myself to try to be better and to try to make things easier for myself and others. There is so much terrible shit in the world that I need a voice whispering in my ear telling me that all is not lost.“
Nathaniel Russell’s recent paintings and prints continue to explore themes of anxiety, hope, and compassion in this modern world. These works employ on an interest in graphic design and drawing as evidence of human imperfection and are an invitation to meditate on complicated feelings. His work is widely popular in both the gallery world and the graphic art sphere having designed Books, Record Albums, illustrations for the New York Times, and his viral Fake Flier project. Often using humor as an entry point, Russell provokes viewers to consider their place in the universe. His clever words and bold graphics illuminate sad truths of contemporary culture, as well as empower- ing values. These themes of hope, reflection and transcendence take on a particular significance against a contemporary backdrop of cultural disconnection and distraction.
This exhibition will be Nathaniel Russell’s third exhibition with Gallery 16.