On the Roof: Flags by Emily Nachison

Don’t forget to look up! This month’s Rooftop Project Space installation is by Portland artist, Emily Nachison.


Flower Time

This series of flags was inspired by Carolus Linnaeus’ horologium florae (floral clock) hypothesis. In 1751, Carolus Linnaeus, a Swedish naturalist, hypothesized that flowers could be used to measure time by planting them in a 12-point radial formation based on when their species opened and closed. Carolus Linnaeus, (1707 – 1778) is often referred to as the Father of Taxonomy. Linnaeus was the first to frame principles for defining natural genera and species of organisms and to create a uniform system for naming them. The flowers pictured on the flags in Flower Time are organized by the time of day in which they open.


Artist Statement

“In occult philosophy today the world is hidden, and…only knowable in its hiddenness.”

– Eugene Thacker

My artwork explores the desire for alternate realities and liminal space. Through sculptural objects and installation, I investigate the use of story and symbols to mythologize natural phenomena – referencing our collective desire for escapism and secret knowledge. Within my work, mythology, scientific history and New-Age idealism become starting points for an investigation into the creation of meaning and the formation of knowledge.



Emily Nachison, born in San Diego, California, received a BFA from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2006 and a MFA from Cranbrook Academy of Art in 2010. Nachison has had numerous solo exhibitions and has been included in multiple group shows across the country at venues such as the Museum of Contemporary Craft (Portland, OR), Disjecta Contemporary Art Center (Portland, OR), New Mexico State University Art Gallery (Las Cruces, NM), and University of Nevada Sheppard Contemporary (Reno, NV). In 2016 she was an Artist-in-Residence at Wassaic Artist Residency (Wassaic, NY) and the Kutztown University Marlin and Regina Miller Art Gallery (Kutztown, PA). She has lectured at Portland Art Museum (Portland, OR), Cranbrook Academy of Art (Bloomfield Hills, MI), School for American Crafts, Rochester Institute of Technology (Rochester,NY). Nachison is the Fiber Department Chair and an Assistant Professor at the Oregon College of Art and Craft in Portland, Oregon.

You can see more of Emily’s work at her website. Her flags will be on the roof until the end of November.

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