Young Masters: Focus on Painting|Nick Cuthell

Nick Cuthell, Self Portrait, 2014, Oil on linen, 50 x 90 cm

Nick Cuthell, Self Portrait, 2014, Oil on linen, 50 x 90 cm

The influence of the Old Masters is readily apparent in Nick Cuthell’s work. His working methods are based on traditions that stretch back centuries, reflecting a deep engagement with the qualities of oil paint. With commissioned portraiture forming a large part of his practice Cuthell inhabits a role defined by some of the greatest Old Masters as well as engaging with the traditions of still life, interior and genre scenes. Through all this runs a deep involvement with great artists from many different eras, from Velazquez to Sargent to Mapplethorpe. Cuthell’s contemporary sensibilities and existence squarely position his work in the present. A direct approach to paint application pits a process that rewards lengthy investigations of its subject against the demands of a world increasingly concerned with instant information.
Cuthell trained at the Charles Cecil Studios, Florence, The Art Students League of New York and The Slade School of Fine Art, London. His exhibitions include solo shows at The New Zealand Portrait Gallery and Millwood Gallery in Wellington and group shows at The Camden Arts Centre, Jonathan Grant Galleries and The Cynthia Corbett Gallery. He is a regular finalist in the Adam Award for Portraiture and in 2012 was awarded a highly commended prize for his portrait of Alexander Chan. Notable portrait commissions include Dr Alan Bollard CNZM, the cast of The Hobbit and most recently Her Majesty the Queen.

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