David Lyle is a New York based artist who was born in Okinawa, Japan. He earned a B.A. in studio painting from the College of Creative Studies at the University of California at Santa Barbara.
David acts as both curator and painter, sifting through a vast array of lost snapshots from the ‘50s, ‘60s and ‘70s found at thrift stores, garage sales, flea markets and eBay auctions. His oil on panel paintings mimic their found-photo authenticity, achieving a sense of nostalgia, memories and time passed. There is a harmonious blend of both curator and painter in Lyle that allows him to create a formidable sense of familiarity with his interesting subjects. His paintings are compelling because he selects a wide array of images with dense and varied themes. He chooses purely American moments for our psyches to reflect upon.
He explains his work by saying, “My paintings are inspired from found photographs or ‘discarded memories.’ I feel that to find a lost photo and paint it, allows the photo and the memory to have a second life. Although I don’t know the people in the paintings, I can relate to certain memories and certain times in my own life. By using black and sepia tones, the paintings take on a nostalgic or cinematic mood and I generally try to keep a voyeuristic feel to them, as if the subject is unaware that they are being watched. I like to keep my paintings realistic yet hazy, just like memories can be.”