John Nieto (1936-2018)
John Nieto is one of America’s most influential contemporary artists. He concentrated on themes that transcend mere representation. He painted in vivid, saturated colors, applied in bold strokes to give dimension and character to the canvas. In his etchings and drawings, Nieto employed classic linear techniques to create images of great detail and depth. In all his art Nieto projected sensitivity and respect for his subject. He concentrated on capturing his unique vision of subjects that held personal and universal meaning. Bold imagery is the essence of the art through which Nieto sought to evoke a reaction or response from the viewer. His art is a synthesis of his philosophy and his technical versatility, a powerful expression of pride and vitality.
Nieto is unique among contemporary American artists. His personal philosophies were a vital element of his signature style. Nieto stated, “I employ a subject matter that is familiar and express it the way I see it, with vibrant color and assertive line” The combination of sensitivity and technical versatility became the vehicle that allowed him to transcend the ordinary.
After participating in an exhibit at the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. John met with President Reagan in the Oval Office of the White House and presented him with the painting “Delegate to the White House”. The painting hung in Washington for the duration of the President’s term in office and now has been included in the presidential library.
Nieto’s distinctive style, subject matter, bold imagery and searing color, are instantly recognizable as uniquely his own. Private and institutional collectors throughout the United States and abroad prize his work. He has produced bronze sculptures, etchings, lithographs and silk- screen prints, in addition to drawings in pastel crayons and charcoal. He devoted most of his career to his first love, painting.
John participated by invitation in the “Salon d’Automne” at the Grand Palais, Paris, France. In 1989 he mounted a one-man show at the Axis Gallery in Tokyo, Japan. Each summer he has an annual exhibition in Santa Fe, NM at Ventana Fine Art. John Nieto’s family roots run deep in New Mexico, as it has been his ancestral birthplace for more than 300 years. John and his family have lived in various New Mexico towns, and for the last fifteen years of his life in Texas.