André Balyon was born in 1951 in The Hague, the Netherlands, the oldest of seven children. All four of his brothers are artists and graphic designers. André began painting at the age of 15 under the tutelage of various master artists in his native Holland.
Although educated as a technical draftsman and specialized welding engineer--employed by ITT in the Netherlands and firms in Germany--being a painter was his calling. He feels that his technical background has helped him in his career as a professional artist.
At 21, André came to the United States. He first moved to Miami, Florida and later to Los Angeles, Califoirnia. He returned to the Netherlands for several years to further his studies, and in Europe found time for several one man shows. Although he still travels home regularly, he has resided in the Carmel area for the last 20 years. As he says, "part of me is (still) over there." He further explains, "Growing up near the Dutch coastline, you can feel the moisture saturated air. It is there where I gazed for hours on end at the dramatic cloud formations." One can feel the moisture-laden clouds in his lush landscapes...the icy chill emanating from his Dutch winter scenes. André's work has been compared to the paintings of Dutch Masters that hang in museums. Yet his range encompasses more than traditional Dutch landscapes; he's also known for his figuratives, still life and local landscapes.
In 1994, he instructed and assisted background artists on magnificent sky scenes for Walt Disney's animated motion picture The Lion King. In 1996, André completed his "Panorama Big Sur," a 17' x 120' circular oil painting that took over 3 years to complete, and depicted the famous California Big Sur costline. Thousands of visitors experienced the thrill of this spectacular work, complete with the sounds of sea breezes. Though much of his work is done in his studio, he still works on location on a number of his pieces. In fact, many years ago, André was one of the artists instrumental in pulling together a yearly Carmel plein air competition...a yearly event which would eventually become the hugely popular Carmel Art Festival which draws hundreds of the best plein air painters from across the country.
André's oil paintings and etchings have been successfully exhibited throughout the United States, Europe and Japan. His work is part of numerous prominent collections throughout the world. Having achieved world-wide acclaim for several decades now, having acquired a vast group of international collectors, and having influenced many well-known and emerging artists with his incredible attention to detail, his exquisite compositions and painterly technique, André Balyon is considered a true, living, modern master.