Nicholas Romeril (born 1967) A native of the Channel Islands, Nicholas Romeril captures the essence of what is central to so many islanders’ lives. His striking motifs of boulders, sand dunes and foaming seas create beautiful and dramatic visions of pristine coastlines.
Nicholas Romeril was born in Jersey, in the Channel Islands on 11 October 1967. Between 1988 and 1993, he attended Camberwell College of Art and Design in London, obtaining a BA (Hons) in Fine Art and an MA in Printmaking. During his course at Camberwell, he won a travel scholarship from the Royal Overseas League International Competition, allowing him to travel and paint in Mexico. On his return, he published and exhibited his work for the Royal Overseas League in St James, London.
As a student at Camberwell, he also exhibited his work in shows in London, Edinburgh and Lincolnshire, and in two solo shows in his native Jersey.
Following the completion of his studies, Nicholas Romeril remained in London for a number of years. Whilst there, he painted cityscapes of the capital, focusing on crowd scenes from above, examining the patters and rhythms which formed from bustling tourist venues. However, his focus began to shift to views of the sky, as they were, as he said, ‘the most natural thing I could see in London’. At Camberwell, he had developed a close association with the Britart scene of the early 1990s and, on leaving, shared a studio in Minet Road, Brixton, with such fellow artists as Damien Hirst, Cecily Brown and Marcus Harvey. In 1994, while also working from his Brixton studio, Romeril was employed as an artist and designer for Peter Billington, an interior designer based in Battersea. During this time, Romeril was commissioned to design, make and install 52 Verre Eglomise mirrors for the Sultan of Brunei’s London home in Park Lane. After a few years working in the capital, he became frustrated at his inability to see a whole vista in London, and was drawn back to his native Jersey. Following six months travelling around South East Asia and Australia, he arrived back in Jersey in 1996.
Setting up a studio upon his return to Jersey, Nicholas Romeril began lecturing on the Art and Design courses at Highlands School of Art, Jersey. In 2001, he completed his Certificate in Education at the University of Southampton. In addition to teaching, his return to Jersey has allowed him to develop his detailed and intense paintings of the island’s coastline. His work stems from his close relationship with nature and Jersey itself and, in 2005, his work on the subject of the Jersey cow was selected for ‘Herd of Charing Cross?’, an artistic incarnation of work to raise awareness of the importance of the island’s heritage. This involved a series of large-scale images of the iconic breed hung on a number of building facades and across streets in the Charing Cross area of St Helier, Jersey. In December 2012, he was named one of four local Jersey people to become an ambassador for the Jersey Tourism Campaign, alongside singer Nerina Pallot, tour guide Arthur Lamy and Oyster farmer Chris Le Masurier.
Since 1996, Nicholas Romeril has regularly held shows in Jersey and London, and since 2009 has also held solo shows in Switzerland and France. In 2006, he exhibited a collection of paintings he created whilst living alone on the tiny reef of Les Minquiers, located about nine miles south of Jersey. In addition to his paintings, he has produced a number of sculptures and installations for public and private collections, working in media ranging from stainless steel and powdered aluminium to used horseshoes. His work hangs in corporate and private collections in Europe, North America and the Far East. Chris Beetles Gallery has held two solo shows of Nicholas Romeril’s work – ‘Sand Surf Stone’ in March 2013 and ‘Beachcomber’ in July 2014.
Nicholas Romeril lives in Jersey with his wife and children.