Nigel Brown has been represented by ARTIS Gallery since February 2014. His next solo exhibition at ARTIS opens on Tuesday 15 October 2019.
Brown directly and selectively employs history, literature, politics and more recently the subject of climate change, in his artworks. While at Elam in the 1970s, Colin McCahon suggested that Brown contain his text in a border or boundary – a technique he still employs today.
Brown has a systematic and workmanlike approach to painting. He works from an initial concept, which is the result of reading and extensive research. Sketches, photographs and other sources are used as a visual back up to develop specifics, leading to works on paper and trial paintings. The main ideas and words of each work are then sketched in by brush, followed by the initial lines and tones, and the first of several layers of paint.
In 2005 Brown took up an artist residency at the New Zealand Embassy in Moscow, hosted by New Zealand’s Russian ambassador Stuart Prior. In 2009, The Brown Years,an exhibition at the Tauranga Art Gallery, celebrated the formative years of the artist’s career. In 2011 Brown was chosen to participate in The Depot’s Cultural Iconsproject. The project celebrated individuals who had contributed significantly to New Zealand’s creative landscape.
In addition to his painting, Brown is a printmaker and has undertaken two significant stained glass window designs – St Mary’s Catholic Church, Auckland (1991) and the Holy Trinity Cathedral, Parnell, Auckland (1998).
Brown has received numerous awards throughout his career including; the QEII Arts Council Grant (1981), Inaugural Artists to Antarctica Award (1998) and in 2004 was awarded the ONZM for services to painting and printmaking.