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"Limelight" --Artwork by Michael Nichols
Art Show

"For the past ten years, I have been researching contemporary applications of buon fresco, an ancient technique of painting onto fresh wet plaster. In essence, fresco is a method of making colored limestone. Although it has a long and distinguished history, particularly as an architectural feature, buon fresco’s use as a medium for contemporary expression is barely existent due to a number of reasons that include its extreme physical demands and the overall difficulty of the medium. The goal of my work is to push the traditional boundaries of buon fresco in terms of form, concept, and subject matter in ways that respect the medium’s history, but offers a “fresh” point of access for contemporary viewers. In contrast to fresco’s traditional use, I apply color with an airbrush and create works that are portable, lightweight, and at times modular. I spray mists of pigment onto fresh plaster until figures emerge. The atomized dispersal of the figures intrigues me because it creates veiled subjects whose identities are not amplified nor fixed as is historically the case with buon frescoes. Rather than literal description, the images rely on subtlety and nuance. The forms I create reflect my curiosity about appearances and their relation to metaphysical ideas of knowing and being." --Michael Nichols


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