Nat Girsberger on The Power of Art


Where are you from and were you have you always pursued art?

I’m from Switzerland, born and raised, and I came to New York 8 years ago to pursue art.

It started out as performance art, and gradually became visual through photography, film and installation. Finally I’ve arrived at collaging. My art centers around my interest in philosophy and psychology, and exposure to mental illness in my close environment. I practice meditation and I am curious to visualize the inner world through art.

What are some things you’re working on right now as an artist?

I just closed a solo show in Manhattan at the Storefront Project, and I’m working through the comedown now. I do have a solo show up at 68 Jay currently. I’m doing a few album covers per usual, and I am creating a tarot deck with my collages, which includes writing a small book to go with it. I like working on my writing right now in general. Words create another access point for people to turn into their own psyche. You know, some people are visual and some people connect more to writing, and I want my viewers to be able to have both contexts.

I’m also starting a collaboration with a performance artist (Domenica Garia), turning my collages into immersive 3D experiences.

What is your main message as an artist right now?

I want to live in a world where everyone feels that they can create their own reality and live up to their full, expansive potential. I want to bring awareness to mental health and inclusivity and I aim to connect people to their deeper purpose.  It’s all about what’s already going on inside, and then bringing that outward in order to create a better world together.

Describe what it’s like to be an artist right now.

It’s hard! I can really speak to that because after the show that just closed, I’m waiting to be inspired again, and it’s not fun on the days when I’m not. To me, it’s a necessity to create, and when I feel blocked, it’s easy to question: why am I doing this to myself?! But, at the end of the day, it’s so fulfilling, and that’s why I do it. It’s deep, authentic and vulnerable work.

Sometimes I do wish someone could just carve out a clear path for me, because not having that at all (not even a schedule) is often challenging. However, I’d be way to rebellious and would defy any rules about how to approach my day-to-day anyway, so….

Tell me more about your passion for one’s inner potential.

I was always doing this thing without realizing why. It’s partly because I have a family member affected by mental illness which showed me that the world is not at all black and white. I didn’t realize until later how much that was influencing me. I also see through daily meditation and yoga practice what can shift. Lessons on this also came with a past relationship ending. While it lasted, I wound up leaving a lot of the potential up to my ex. When we broke up, I realized I had somewhat handed over my responsibility for my strength and power, so I turned things around a lot.

What does it mean to you to be powerful?

For me, it’s about inner potential and realizing that you don’t need anyone to tell you the answers; you can access them at any point within yourself. I guess I’d say independence is crucial to do that. I moved to New York when I was eighteen as a foreigner, so external independence has always come easily to me. Internal independence however took longer, but that’s what I feel is the real power.

What is a product or item that you love and why?

I love my bicycle! I’m into transportation and moving, getting from A to B. I feel like it’s a symbol for change, which is really the only constant in life. It makes me feel good to move with change. That’s how I get around New York. I love my new bike that this amazing bikeshop in Brooklyn traded for artwork.


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