Nyle Major

Home / Salons / 16th ARC Salon

Nyle Major

New Zealand

Nyle Major began his art practice in 2010. The aim of which was to crate art works inspired by classical realism with a contemporary flavour, using traditional 19th Century techniques.

Since beginning his practice and spending time at Studio Escalier- an international art school in Argenton-Chateau, France, he has exhibited in multiple solo shows, group exhibitions and general large scale art shows. He has shown work internationally, run artist workshops, received awards and accolades and completed many commissions of varying subjects. 

Ambition in one’s chosen field often comes naturally. Nyle’s case is no exception. From an early age, he displayed talent for painting, drawing and model making. Skill development was slowed significantly while studying art in high school and university by the more conceptually-based work taught at these institutions, where less importance is attached to the way in which the work is executed. As a result, creating artwork to a high technical standard was largely disregarded, and it took five years after graduating to uncover the lost drive and excitement that comes from making classically realist-based painting.

But he is grateful for what he did learn in lieu of developing technical skill, as his practice displays not only technical aptitude, but the series of works are built around a strong conceptual framework learned at these institutions.

With strong conceptual framework and painting skill, Nyle’s art practice has evolved into a professional enterprise, which in order to maintain and grow, requires considerable time investment. As with many artists lacking the reliability of a full-time income, productivity has been hampered. Despite this barrier, he has worked hard to ensure his painting is constantly developing and evolving, and that he is exhibiting as often as possible.

Traditional painting and art movements in the 18th and 19th centuries have played a significant role in developing Nyle’s art practice:

First and foremost, a viewer’s first impression of the painting is its visual impact. This will determine whether or not they will be drawn to the work and develop a connection with it. Painting with the essence of tradition is easily relatable to everyone, and makes this transition easier”. N.Major 2015

William Bouguerau (1825-1905) is his favourite artist, and inspiration for a lot of the figure painting Nyle creates. He is the greatest artist who ever lived and that you have never heard of”, and reached academic paintings’ zenith at a time in 19th century France when favour was starting to lean towards the Impressionists. William Bouguereau and compatriots of his time such as John Singer Sargent, Lord Leighton and Lawrence Alma-Tadema all heavily inspire Nyle’s art practice. However, not all his inspirations come from the 19th century. He is also drawn to contemporary artists such as Roberto Ferri and renaissance artists like Caravaggio who also possess that particular quality only the greats truly possess and the rest of us try to emulate. 

* This statement has been provided directly by the artist in association to their 16th International ARC Salon entries. This content has not been edited for typos or grammatical errors and has not been vetted for accuracy.