Nan Hoover was born in 1931. She attended the Corcoran Gallery Art School. Hoover moved to Amsterdam in 1969, and has performed and exhibited her work extensively throughout Europe. She received a Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst Fellowship in 1980. Her video works have been exhibited at festivals and institutions internationally, including Documentas 6 and 8, Kassel, Germany; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Centre International d'Art Contemporain, Montreal; The Museum of Modern Art, New York; Kijkhuis, The Hague; Sydney Video Festival; Berlin Film Festival; Kunstmuseum, Bern; and Museum Folkwang, Essen, Germany. Hoover lives in Amsterdam.
Exploring subtle ambiguities of visual perception, Hoover elicits an evocative tension between abstraction and reality, fluidly manipulating light and shadow into sculptural form with slow, concentrated movements. Precisely composed for a stationary camera, unfolding in real time, these contemplative reveries use austere reductivity to invoke the sublime. A hand, traced by shifting light, becomes a luminous, sculptural landscape; moving shadows suggest a mountain veiled in mist. Nuanced orchestrations of light on a close-up of the body or a surface create enigmatic illusions of scale, form, space and temporality, evoking metaphorical transformations and timelessness. A painterly aesthetic pervades these minimalist works.
Prior to concentrating on video, performance and photography in 1974, Hoover worked in painting and drawing. She writes that her images "reflect quietness, using slow movement to catch the gradual changes in light, color, and form. I attempt to transport one into an area within ourselves where we can dream and explore our personal worlds."