Peter Cleverley

Cleverley’s career in art making and art teaching is extensive, his works are held in the collections of New Zealand public art galleries including, TePapa, Wellington, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, The Suter Gallery, Nelson and Forrester Public Art Gallery, Oamaru.  Born in Oamaru 1954, he had already chosen his life pathway at Waitaki Boys High School, qualifying with Fine Arts Preliminary, enabled him a place at the Dunedin School of Art; attaining a Dip F&A honours in painting, 1974.  For the decade following he travelled parts of the world, including, Australia, Indonesia, then destinations in Europe and the Northern hemisphere, followed by an overland journey via Turkey, Iran, Afghanistan, India, Thailand, Malaysia, and Polynesia.  He comments “this was a major part of my life education, seeing the power of nature after cyclone Tracy hit Darwin and reaching the top of the Buddha sculptures at Bamiyan Afghanistan, are actions and events that still inform my paintings today”.  Returning to Aotearoa 1983 he has made his Turangawaewae, Kakanui, from there he has combined his continuous studio practice and exhibiting with teaching at the Dunedin School of Art, lecturing B.V.A. and post graduate students in painting and drawing.  His paintings have always referenced the ‘human condition’, he comments, “Though I might not necessarily picture any figurative elements, the compositions are full of humanities.  I might reference the thirty million year old geomorphology of Aotearoa, at once with some local vernacular, with some personal history, alongside some activity on the other side of the world.  The politics, ideas and thoughts are constantly with me though; I don’t have to think further about them, this allows me to concentrate on the practicalities such as, surface, medium and application.  I want the visual impact of the work to enable multiple readings, promote information and discussion, primarily for me, then for any other viewer.  I use all my knowledge in every painting, but begin each by thinking nothing at all”.

b 1954

(Work above)

Title: Southerly Squall, Kakanui  $NZD POA    Size: 45.5 x 67.5cm   

Medium: Oil on gesso on canvas

Title: Fault Line, Ikawai      $NZD POA    Size: 28 x 65cm   

Medium: Oil on gesso on H/B

Title: In The Valley, Waitaki      $NZD POA    Size: 52 x 52cm   

Medium: Oil on gesso on linen