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Peter R

Peter Robinson’s Biography

Last Updated:
29/05/2023, 9:30 am
Visual Artist
Arts Foundation Laureate 2016
Ngāi Tahu

Peter Robinson started his career as a painter and studied sculpture at Ilam School of Fine Arts from 1985-1989. His journey then saw him play a large part in bi-cultural debate through the late 80s and early 90s, becoming renowned for his provocative and controversial treatment of racial issues, ethnicity and identity. However, once Peter had felt this phase of his career had run its course, and for fear of being perpetually type-cast as an identity artist, Peter leapt into new territory and revisited his interest in Post Minimalism and Arte Povera, which he had been drawn to in his first year at Ilam. These movements were to inform the structure, orientation and social impulse of his work throughout the next decade of his career.

Peter’s use of materials and techniques are also perpetually changing tack - drawing, painting, sculpture, digital media and installation have all play their part in Peter’s huge collection of work. In 2001, Peter and Jacqueline Fraser represented New Zealand in the 49th Venice Biennale and in 2008 Peter won the Walters Prize for ACK and 2013 in participated in the Istanbul Biennale and last year he was included in the Jakarta Biennale.

Photo credit: Jarrett Earnest