In preview mode NWjs.AppFolder is blank. I'll try exporting to see if it then has any path string.
Ok... so the manual, that I did read fairly thoroughly, has an error and is missing a sentence in the "Previewing" section. NWjs.AppFolder does not contain the install folder in "preview" mode. It is blank. You must export your game as NWjs for AppFolder to contain the path to the install folder.
So this evening I'll try hard-coding a full path like "C:\somePath\someFolder\pawn-icon.png" in the Sprite.LoadFromUrl method and see what happens. According to the manual, this will load the image from disk.
EDIT: Actually the manual quote above about hardcoding a path is referring to the NWjs methods like Read and Write, not the Sprite.LoadFromUrl. So my test above will fail. So the answer to my OP is you must be running an NWjs exported project to load a Sprite image (that is not known prior to runtime and imported into C2) from disk. That's the only way you can do this.