Born and raised in Christchurch, I have always been drawing and painting. I had an earlier career as a community worker but slowly got ‘drawn’ into the art world after showing work at the Canterbury Society of Arts in the early 90s. My first exhibition in 1992 was to be all acrylic paintings but I ended up running short of time. Someone suggested I do a few drawings to fill in the gaps so I dug out a forgotten box of pastels and felt an immediate affinity with this powdery medium.
Most of my work is now in pastel - I love that you have to use your fingers to blend the colours together, like finger painting, and that you are essentially building a picture from coloured dust - there is something elemental about that.
I have been a full-time artist since 1995, living near the Selwyn River/Waikirikiri close to Te Waihora/Lake Ellesmere in Canterbury. The deterioration of this river and lake along with many others in Aotearoa spurs my art and my life. I believe we have a moral responsibility to ensure the environment is in good shape to pass on to our children and their children.
I enjoy being involved in the local art scene in Selwyn and have been part of many community art initiatives, including helping establish the Down By The Liffey Gallery in Lincoln. I was honoured to receive the 2010 Selwyn District Council Art and Culture Award for services to the arts in Selwyn.
I find it hard to describe my work. I came up with this description years ago and I think it still holds true:
Looking down on a river winding through the hills is food for the soul. There is a sense of awe, of peace and of harmony with nature - these are the feelings that I am trying to convey in my artwork.
Land, sky and water are the elements I work with and I never tire of them.
I hope you enjoy my paintings