Govinder Nazran – A Popular Modern English Artist

Govinder Nazran (1964-2008) was one of Britain’s most promising young artists. Born in 1964 in Birmingham to Kabel and Dhan Kaur, Govinder spent his childhood in Bradford. It was at Bradford University that Govinder first received formal training in art. After completing his course in Graphic Design with distinction in 1983, Govinder moved to Lincoln Art College and secured a Higher Diploma in Graphic Design, again with distinction. He then worked in London and Cambridge as a freelance illustrator, mainly for children’s books.

Govinder married Sarah Welton in 1992 and settled in Saltaire, West Yorkshire. In 1993 their daughter Eden was born. He then worked as a designer of greeting cards and as photographic art director. It was six years later in 1999 that Govinder seriously considered painting. It was the beginning of a fruitful relationship with the leading fine art publisher, Washington Green, whom he approached. Part of the Halcyon Fine Art Group that has been representing painters and sculptors for 25 years, Washington Green would be just the support Govinder needed to be successful in a field he entered only recently. It would also serve to increase Govinder’s popularity among collectors worldwide.

The fruit of this relationship was “Cat Walk”, Govinder’s first commercially successful painting. It was widely appreciated and its prints were sold out on release. This was the green signal Govinder had been waiting for to branch out full-time into fine art.

Success and popularity would follow Govinder through his works. The existence of good and evil has been a recurring theme in many of his paintings. “The world is a place where the innocent pay the heaviest price. It affects me deeply. It’s like living in the garden of ‘Good and Evil’.” His paintings depict this, but he calls them “innocent pictures”. The observer can take any meaning from his pictures in that they could represent either good or evil, as the viewer sees it. Govinder stated that “I am, and always will be, an eternal optimist.” His paintings, in short, are a result of the two opposing feelings of concern over the rise of evil and the faith that the world would eventually turn out to be a better place.

His popular works include “Cat Walk”, “Leopold”, “Spider”, “Hungry For You”, “Benny No Balls”, “Le Chat Parisien”, “Scratch & Sniff”, and “The Patriot”. Govinder was the Best Selling Published Artist in the Fine Art Trade Guild Awards in 2004. That year he also held two popular tours in Japan where his paintings were a sell-out. The news of his death on 30th December, 2008 at age 44 following a seizure on Christmas Eve was a deep shock to his fans and publisher Washington Green.