Born in New York City to parents who were both artists, Daphne began drawing at an early age. She took up painting in high school in the seaside town of Dennis when her father gave her an easel for her birthday, and subsequently, they painted “en plein air” on the beach to study the unique effects of Cape Cod light. Upon winning her first award when she was fourteen from the “Boston Globe”, her teachers encouraged her to enter the School of Fine Art at Yale University where she earned her BA. At Yale, she received a scholarship to study the old masters in Florence, Italy. Afterwards, Daphne won merit scholarships to continue her studies at the Art Students League of New York. Later, while living in Holland for three years, she studied the early Dutch masters and gained inspiration from the work of Vermeer and Frans Halls. There she developed her profound dedication, and marked preference, for the Modern School of Realism. She developed a high degree of proficiency in figurative art and still life studies.
The artist returned to the US in 1993 to work at Mural Arts, San Francisco, with an artist team to paint murals for hotels in Las Vegas and residences in Hawaii & Mexico. At this point in the artist’s career, Nixon reverted back to painting in the “plein air” style learned while growing up. Then, armed with a French easel, Nixon showed that the paint brush is mightier than the wrecking ball by saving an historical town from demolition by doing paintings of the town. This was accomplished by winning a grant, “Old Cordelia in a New Light” from Fairfield, CA, to exhibit 45 paintings of Cordelia’s historical structures to raise awareness for the preservation of California gold rush towns. Then, in 2005, Nixon won another grant, ”Disappearing Agricultural Monuments in Solano”, to paint old tank houses. As a result, California’s Senator Machado selected Nixon’s work to represent his district in the “CA Contemporary Art Collection Exhibition” at the Sacramento Capital Building, and published the paintings in the “CA Contemporary Artists Collection, 2007”. To commemorate Nixon’s paintings of Cordelia, in 2010, the Solano County Department of Resources etched three of Nixon’s paintings in granite on the historical markers along the Old Town Cordelia Historical Walking Path.
The artist won numerous 1st Place awards; appeared in various periodicals; exhibited in the US & Europe; and is a member of Oil Painters of America and the International Guild of Realism. Today, you can see Daphne’s work at the Carmel Valley Art Association Gallery in Carmel Valley Village, CA.
10 thoughts on “Biography”
Amazing! what u have accomplished is truly inspiring..
Daphne, I am so impressed with your incredible artwork. You are definitely inspiring me. I’m curious if you have ever reproduced your paintings through the Giclee process?
Thank you, Donna! Do you paint too?
I’ve just started to paint on a regular basis after many years.
I left comment at “Cordelia” paintings. Cordelia is personal to me.
Daphne, I am in awe. You are amazing. I have never met anyone like you and I am honored to call you a friend. Wow!
Hi Stacey, That was very nice of you to say that…and I am very honored to be your friend too! Thank you very much, Daphne
daphne, I very much enjoy your painting. I tried to paint for years, but never reached your level of competency and expression. Im also gald I was able to meet the artist who created” Cutts Island”. Ive already hug the painting on my “water scene” wall. Its wonderfully colorful. Thank you. Brian Ebersole
We met in Hawaii I was with Alexis and Maureen. I really love your art I didn’t know when we met that you had done all the paintings you have done. It was hot at the beach I don’t think we talked to much lol but I have looked at your paintings and you are really good. You live in Caifornia now and we moved to Florida so I don’t think we will ever run across each other again, but I just wanted to say I think you are a very good artist.
Thank you very much for the kind words about my art. I enjoyed meeting you in Hawaii too. My daughter, Chloe, (Alexis’ friend on the gymnastics team), just started as a freshman at the University of Hawaii at Manoa (in Oahu!) Also, I just got back from a trip to Palm Beach, FL..it’s a very beautiful state you live in. I hope you stay safe from the hurricane! Please let me know if you are ever in Carmel, Ca…I’ll show you some more of my art if you like.
Best regards, Daphne