Robert Lyn Nelson

Born: Southern California

“Robert Lyn Nelson is the pioneer of the Modern Marine Art Movement. Creating a new artistic genre with his “Two Worlds” concept, Nelson forever changed the way we view our relationship to our environment.”

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In 1979, Robert Lyn Nelson created his landmark painting Two World’s and, with it, the Modern Marine Art Movement. His vision of life above and below the ocean’s surface launched a successful and widely imitated genre of contemporary art, and has become a symbol for one of the most compassionate efforts of out time, the struggle to preserve the life of sea.

Nelson’s collectors include public figures and leading institutions, and sales of his work and personal appearances have produced significant financial contributions to many environmental organizations. His accomplishments result from a lifetime of study and dedication of his craft.

A native of southern California, born in 1955, Nelson was a child prodigy who produced drawings of remarkable quality at age three. At thirteen, he was offered scholarships at Chaffery and Mount San Antonio Colleges, both of which he attended while still in high school. At fifteen, the first public exhibition of his works was virtually sold out. A year later he began a series of one-man shows in public places such as banks, office buildings and corporate collections.

Nelson moved to Oahu, Hawaii, in 1973. In the 1970s, artists from around the world, attracted by the lure of warm waters and clear blue skies, were converging on the island of Maui. It was here, the winter home of the Humpback whales, where Robert Lyn Nelson moved in 1977 and began to develop his bold new art. “I wanted to paint the precise sensation of being in two universes at once. I could see it when I went diving, and I wanted to share it with the world. At the time there was nothing like it – nothing.”

The prominence of Nelson’s marine works should not overshadow his abilities in a remarkable variety of forms. His collected impressionist, neo-cubist and other non-representational works could each have generated a successful career. What unifies Nelson’s body of work is his painstaking perfectionism. He often takes months to complete a single painting.