Christopher Nealie's artistic practice investigates the aesthetics and phenomenology of sacred spaces, particularly his own experience of Western Christianity. He is interested in the interior and exterior architecture of churches and cathedrals, and the way that light is used both functionally to illuminate the space, and to convey a sense of the holy or sacred. His work is especially concerned with the conflict between the solidity and permanence of traditional sacred spaces, and the need for flexible structures in the globalised world, where people constantly travel from place to place.
Nealie's influences range from the Jewish Tabernacle, 19th century “Tin Tabernacles”, or flatpack churches, to IKEA products and Dan Flavin’s works with fluorescent light. He is interested in the making process, and how the role of the artisan or craftsman can interact with contemporary techniques and technologies of making.