Neil Ratnavira de Alwis an abstract expressionist and photographer, born on August 7, 1978 in Colombo, Sri Lanka, an only child, he was brought up by his single mother and grand-mother in a country torn apart by civil war. The early years of his life, schooling was intermittent and life constantly interrupted by curfews, exploding car bombs, buses and buildings set on fire.
To get away from these horrors, his mother moved with him to Paris, France in 1989. Arriving in Paris as a child, not speaking a word of French was one of the most difficult challenges Neil faced. In spite of the cultural shocks, economic hardships and difficulties of social integration, Neil spoke the language of art and was successfully accepted into the sought after Art Institute of Paris, where he got his BA in Graphic design & Art.
At the age of 20, Neil moved to live in California, USA and in 2017, Neil moved back to France where he currently lives.
Neil has exhibited his work in London, Paris, San Diego and Los Angeles.
Neil has been painting all his life. His art is his driving force and reason to be. He often says “if I did not paint or take pictures, I don’t feel like I am alive”.
For Neil, his art and photography are his words and his solace. He expresses himself and his inner feelings via his pictures, his canvases and the textures of paint. He is a self-taught artist whose style has evolved over the years. The different cultures and countries Neil has lived in influences his work, he has his own unmistakeable style and distinctive look.
He is passionate about photography and abstract art and the humans behind the work; He pushes the paint, the lenses and himself to the limits! Neil feels he is now, more than ever painting and making photographs in the way he always wanted to, his dream.. to share his work with the world.