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international painting annual 5 exhibition-in-print
online resource

Michael Nichols
Bowling Green, Kentucky

Western Kentucky University, Associate Professor

detail image


I painted "Brume" and "Slur" in buon fresco, an ancient technique of pigmenting wet lime plaster. In its purest sense, buon fresco is a method of painting into stone. This practice of fusing pigment in plaster is compelling not only formally, as the crystalline surface is literally jewel-like, but also because the techniqueís stone-like permanence has historically been a key factor in its monumental use to adorn buildings and consolidate authority for patrons.

Although my process is rooted in traditional methods such as fresco, my goal is to create contemporary images that reflect on metaphysical ideas such as flux, being/non-being, and permanence/non-permanence. Both "Brume" and "Slur" were painted using an airbrush (spray paint) and monochromatic palettes. In each work fine mists of color were sprayed onto a white plaster surface until a veiled figure emerged. The atomized dispersal of the figures creates a shroud, a barrier between the viewer and the portrayal.





born: 1973, St. Louis, Missouri



Fontbonne University, MFA, 2000

Fontbonne University, BFA, 1997


selected awards/honors

RCAP Grant: "Refresh: Exploring Contemporary Applications of Buon Fresco", Office of Sponsored Programs, Western Kentucky University, 2014
Third Place, 3rd Annual Figurative Drawing and Painting Competition, Susquehanna University, 2011
Al Smith Fellowship Award, Kentucky Arts Council, 2010
Second Place, National Drawing Annual, Manifest Creative Research Gallery, 2006


selected publications

International Drawing Annual 7, exhibition-in-print. Cincinnati, OH: Manifest Press
National Drawing Annual 2006, exhibition-in-print, Cincinnati, OH: Manifest Press


selected solo or two-person exhibits

Frescoes and Silverpoints, Lindsey Wilson College, Columbia, Kentucky, 2014
Michael Nichols; Selected Works,Carnegie Visual and Performing Arts Center, Covington, Kentucky, 2013
Conlfluence, Visual Arts Center, Blackburn College, Carlinville, Illinois, 2011
Figures in Flux, John Brown University, Silaom Springs, Arkansas, 2009


selected group shows

Huntsville Museum of Fine Art: The Red Clay Survey, 2014 Exhibition of Contemporary Southern Art, Huntsville, Museum of Fine Art, Huntsville, Alabama, 2014
Drawing Discourse, 5th Annual Exhibition of Contemporary Drawing, University of North Carolina, Asheville, North Carolina, 2014
Grayscale, Strathmore Mansion and Galleries, North Bethesda, Maryland, 2012
Residue, 22nd Annual Drawing Show, Boston Center for the Arts, Mills Gallery, Boston, Massachusetts, 2011



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