Adaptation and resistance, exaggeration and lies, dreams and memories are recurring themes in Nicholas Galanin’s work. He draws upon a wide range of Indigenous technologies and global materials when exploring ideas through his art.
Born in Sitka, Alaska, Galanin has trained in traditional as well as contemporary approaches to art. His body of work simultaneously preserves his culture and explores new perceptual territory. He studied at the London Guildhall University where he received a bachelor of fine arts degree with honors in jewelry design and silversmithing. He earned a master’s degree in Indigenous visual arts at Massey University in New Zealand. Galanin is also an accomplished musician who performs under the name Silver Jackson. He finds new expression in fashion design. His many artistic influences merge in this multimedia exhibition of large sculptures, video and live performance.
Galanin says in his artist statement that culture cannot be contained as it unfolds: “My art enters this stream at many different points, looking backwards, looking forwards, generating its own sound and motion. I am inspired by generations of Tlingit and Unangax creativity and contribute to this wealthy conversation through active curiosity. There is no room in this exploration for the tired prescriptions of the ‘Indian art world’ and its institutions. Through creating I assert my freedom.”
This exhibition is part of the Patricia B. Wolf Solo Exhibition Series, presented with generous support from the Alaska State Council on the Arts; the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency; and the Anchorage Museum Foundation’s Alaska Airlines Silver Anniversary Fund.