Rolfe Harris (born 1942, Nassau, The Bahamas), is one of
the Bahamas' most revered realist painters, with his works highly sought after
by top collectors. He is known for his
delicate still-life paintings of objects commonly found in Bahamian homes,
under-sea scenes which display his profound understanding how light is filtered
in water, and powerful portraits of Bahamians from all walks of life.
Harris has a reputation as a master realist and his paintings, of which there are only a few created every year, are among the most valuable in The Bahamas. 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, is motivated by the natural beauty of his surroundings. His mission is to preserve the beauty of The Bahamas by recording it's highlights in his body of work.
As a young man working on charter boats, Harris 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.
Presently 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, Harris 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.
His work hangs in many private and corporate collections, including The Central Bank of The Bahamas, Dawn Davies Collection and that of the late author Arthur Hailey.