Nick Bonovas was one of the fourteen Greek Australian artists that participated in the Exhibition held Wednesday 29 April 2015 , in Canberra, with subject of inspiration “Lemnos and her historic connection with the ANZAC Centenary” curated by Mrs Eva T. Dafaranos. Nick’s work was titled: “Allied troops and archaeologists with a headless statue of Eros” 61cm x 91cm, acrylic and oil on stretched canvas, 2015
I was born in Sydney in December 1966. My parents are from Ioannina, Greece. They both worked when I was young and my grandparents helped raise me and my younger sister. My entire family showed a flair for art. From the age of 5 I began to show signs of artistic ability. Drawing became my favourite pastime.
The first thing I drew was a horse. From there on I drew various subjects and at the age of 7 I developed a passion for Greek art; anything from sculpture to vase paintings, and in particular, Ancient Greek battles. After reading about and researching books on Ancient Greek History, I further developed my knowledge of the subject and through the years made this my area of expertise, even though I still enjoy drawing and painting a variety of other subjects such as landscapes, seascapes and portraits. As a youngster both my parents encouraged me to pursue my artistic talent and develop my skills in this field. When I decided to follow this as my career path, however, my parents were not thrilled with the idea. What they saw as a hobby was my ambition. I felt that being an artist was my calling and, at the time, nothing else interested me.
At the age of 17 I realised it was time to move from experimenting to serious painting and drawing. A couple who were visiting my parents, saw my artwork and offered to purchase it. It dawned on me then, that my talent was appreciated and could earn me money. Various organisations began to show interest in my work, and before long, my work was being auctioned at numerous events.
There are many artists who inspire me for many different reasons.: Carravagio for his life like appearance of his subjects; Rembrandt for his use of light; De Lacroix and & Velasquez for their dynamic presentation of their subjects, just to name a few.
My favourite medium to create with is oil. I also like working with graphite pencil when creating B&W drawings.
My creative process varies, depending on the subject but mainly, I like to set the mood with a coffee, music , researching and watching a good documentary. It always gets me in the mood to paint and draw. The inspiration is always there.
My style has not changed much over the years. Even though I am always looking for new ideas and experimenting with different techniques, my style has remained the same.
My work is a combination of working from life, photographs and imagination, depending on what the subject matter at hand is.
The subject of my painting and the way it is executed are both as important as each other.
I prefer a smooth technique when painting but, at times, it is necessary to use a rougher, more energetic technique to depict the chosen subject. For example, landscapes and seascapes.
I want my audience to be moved by my work; to feel the realism and become a part of what is depicted in my artwork. To appreciate the History and the culture and to empathise with the subject.
I usually finish every painting I begin, but there are times when some are left unfinished to be completed at a later date.
There are a few pieces of my work that I created for myself and, at this stage, have no intention of parting with them.
The time it takes to finish a painting depends on a number of things: Size, detail, drying time. Some paintings have been completed within 1 week and others have taken up to 2 months.
I would love to be given the opportunity to illustrate a book. It is one of my ambitions as an artist. I have designed a book cover in the past, but as yet, have not done an entire book.
Nick Bonovas (Nikos Art)
In the media