Only someone who intimately knows and loves the sea can paint it with passion and conviction of Rolfe Harris, master realist and one of the most valued artists of The Bahamas. To understand his art is to understand what motivates the intense artist, a palpable perfectionist who cannot, for the life of him, understand why everyone doesn’t get furious when someone wants to erect skyscrapers instead of protecting dunes. To understand his mission to preserve the beauty of The Bahamas, even if on canvas and to understand his past that led to his present reverence of the sea.
As a young man working on charter boats, Rolfe spent more than 10 years on the water, learning its complexities and wonders. Since then, he has committed to canvas the vivid memories and distinctive colors and culture of his country; painting junkanoo festivals and raging seas, night scenes and large murals of marine life on a coral reef. His work hangs in major banks, luxury offices, small museums and residences including that of author, Arthur Hailey, a Bahamian resident.
At 55, he lives and paints by the sea in his studio in Nassau. Though his studio faces a broad expanse of Atlantic Ocean and sun streams through the large windows, Rolfe works on location, creating a detailed pencil sketch of his subjects, then returns throughout the painting process, which can take as long as three months.
Rolfe Harris’ work is in collections throughout the World.