Born in Minneapolis in 1958, Lisa Nankivil grew up on the banks of Mississippi River in the picturesque bluff country of southeast Minnesota, where her family owned Sahaptin Farm, an Appaloosa racehorse breeding operation. As a young adult, she moved to San Francisco to study graphic design and then worked for several years as a freelance art director in the film and advertising industries. She later returned to college to pursue her passion for fine art, earning a BFA degree in painting from the Minneapolis College of Art and Design (MCAD) in 1995.
Though she initially pursued landscape and figure painting, Nankivil later embraced abstraction as her principal means of expression. Comprising complex interplays of color, form, line, and gesture in, her striped-format compositions explore the inherent ambiguities and subjective nature of visual perception.
As a printmaker, Nankivil has been a visiting artist at Highpoint Editions, a nationally prominent print workshop and publisher located in Minneapolis, where she produced several editions of original lithographs and screenprints. Nankivil also collaborates regularly with Twin Cities-based Streetside Press, the principal publisher of her monoprints.
Nankivil exhibits her paintings and original prints nationally and internationally, including recent solo exhibitions at Spanierman Modern, New York, Thomas McCormick Gallery, Chicago, and the Traffic Zone Center for Visual Art in Minneapolis. Her work is found in the collections of the Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, Minneapolis; Scottsdale (Ariz.) Museum of Contemporary Art; Borusan Contemporary Museum, Istanbul, Turkey; William J. Clinton Foundation, New York; SURDNA Foundation, New York; U.S. State Department, Washington, D.C.; and many private collections.
Nankivil currently lives and works in Minneapolis.