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Barbara Nechis began by painting the kind of watercolor landscapes we all began with - leafy trees and old barns-traditional landscapes rendered in descriptive detail. But she quickly realized that although her efforts were satisfactory, they were not satisfying. She wanted to find her own voice, a better way to express her response to the visual world. She wanted to convey the essence of a subject not just describe its visual facts. By using color, shape, and space in a more abstract way, she developed a visual language that is uniquely her own.

Her paintings are not the result of happy accidents, nor are they the product of a systematic design approach. Her paintings are the result of combining her imagination, her emotion, and an intuitive sense of design based on years of painting and study. 

Nechis says, "My objective is to allow my feelings about a subject to come out naturally, then guide them into shapes and value patterns. Although the feeling of trees, mountains, flowers, or water is there because I have used their basic shapes, I haven’t actually painted these objects. Each painting is new; and by allowing the water and paint to flow, letting the paper itself suggest the subject matter and the technique as well, ideas begin to rise.”

Christopher Schink

Issue #1 The Palette Magazine


Barbara Nechis holds a BA in History and Fine Arts from the University of Rochester and an MS from Alfred University. She was a faculty member of Parsons School of Design for many years and has taught seminars at Pratt Institute and throughout North America, Europe, and Asia. She has served as a juror and board member of the American Watercolor Society and awards judge for National Watercolor Society, Watercolor West, and many others. Her work appears in more than 40 books and publications and is included in numerous collections, among them the Butler Institute of American Art, IBM, and Citicorp. She is the author of Barbara Nechis Watercolors (, 2019) Watercolor from the Heart (Watson-Guptill Publications, 1993), and Watercolor the 

Creative Experience (North Light Books, 1979) and is featured in three instructional DVDs

Before relocating to the Napa Valley in Northern California in 1988, she maintained a studio in 

New Rochelle, NY for many years. 


American Watercolor Society; National Academy of Design, NYC; 
Watercolor International 5, The Biennial of Watercolor in Greece invitational;
Contemporary International Watermedia Masters Exhibition, Jiangsu Provence Art Museum, 
Nanjing, China; World Wide Watercolor Exhibition, Thailand; Masters of Watercolor, St 
Petersburg, Russia; National Society of Painters in Casein and Acrylic; Hudson River Museum; 
The Katonah Museum; Lincoln Center, NYC; Sarah Lawrence College; Allied Artists of NY; The 
National Arts Club, NYC; Bard College, NY; Mainstreams, Marietta College, Ohio; NY Society of 
Illustrators; F. Dorian Gallery, San Francisco; Clos Pegase Winery and Napa Valley Museum, CA.


Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, Ohio; 
Citicorp; Banco de Crefisul, Sao Paulo, Brazil; Slater Memorial Museum, Norwich, CT; IBM; CBS; Westinghouse; Peat, Marwick, Mitchell; First National City Bank; McGraw Hill; Margrit Biever Mondavi, Napa Valley, CA; The Napa Valley Heritage Foundation.


American Watercolor Society; National Watercolor Society, CA; Transparent Watercolor Society of America; Watercolor West; Alabama Watercolor Society Exhibition, Montgomery Museum of Fine Arts; Arizona Aqueous XVII, Tubac Center for the Arts; New England Watercolor Society national exhibit; Sierra Watercolor Society, Nevada Museum of Art, Reno; St. Louis Artists Guild multimedia exhibition; Hawaiian Watercolor Society; Western Federation of Watercolor Societies, Art Museum of S. Texas, Corpus Christi (co-juror Millard Sheets) Albuquerque Museum; Whatcom Museum of History & Art Northwest 
International Art Competition Bellingham, WA (co-juror Howard Fox); National Arts Club; 
Audubon Artists, NYC; San Diego Watercolor Society International Exhibition (co-juror Keith Crown)


Selected from more than 50 publications 

The Art Of Watercolour Magazine 17th issue Dec 2014; 20th issue 2015; 28th issue 2017

Watercolor Masters and Legends by Betsy Dillard Stroud 2016

Masters of Watercolor by Konstantin Sterkhov, 2014 (front piece)

World Watermedia Expo, Thailand 2014 (front piece)

Contemporary International Watermedia Masters, Jiangsu Watercolor Research Institute, 

Nanjing China 2007, 2010, 2013; 

American Artist Magazine Watercolor Page; 2000  

Collected Best of Watercolor-Painting Light and Shadow(front piece) Rockport Publishers 2002

The Palette Magazine Issue #1 Christopher Schink and Skip Lawrence

Hong Kong Watercolor (invited American Guest 2001); 

Strengthen Your Paintings with Dynamic Composition by Frank Webb 1994. 

American Artist Magazine, Watercolor 20th Anniversary Issue, 20 Great Teachers by

 M. Stephen Doherty and Beth Patterson, Fall 2006.

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