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BRUCE MORTIMER
 

1995 - 2024 - participant in over 200 shows and exhibitions

2016 - winner, main "Signature Piece" art award at the New Zealand Art Show (pencil drawing)

2024 - One of 3 judges on the upcoming Tasman National Art Awards

2023 - invited guest artist at the Suter Art Gallery Spring exhibition, Nelson

2017, 2016 - Resident artist, ASB Bank, Wellington

2016 - finalist, Parkin Prize (pencil drawing)

2015 - Four page feature in New Zealand Artist magazine (drawing)

2015 - finalist, main art award at the New Zealand Art Show (pencil drawing)

2011 - 2024 - Permanent display of panoramic photography at Rydges Hotel, Wellington 

2007 - Published coffee table book of monochrome images, South Africa 

2001 - Ten page feature in Getaway Magazine, South Africa (photography)

1998 - exhibition alongside the late Errol Boyley in Franschoek, South Africa (photography) 

 

The artist's inspiration and competency, inseparable from their experience, interests and personality, produces art.

I was born in England, and grew up in The Netherlands and South Africa. I have explored in 25 countries and have called New Zealand home for the past 16 years. I don't sit still. When I was 23 I rode 15000km on an XT500 around the lower half of Africa in 5 weeks, fixing a terminally broken suspension in northern Malawi with some metal epoxy glue, quite a relaxed experience compared to having a guard in Zambia with an AK47 asking me what gift I had brought with me for him. I found some Zimbabwe dollars in my pocket and he seemed accepting and let me go from his brandy breath after showing his colleague my 'smiley little face' in my passport. When I travelled overnight in a public bus in Thailand I hid my passport in my underwear. One learns. Once I surfed Tai Long Wan in Hong Kong on a borrowed board - its owner had accidently bitten it when he wiped out and was off to hospital. The board obviously still had the teeth marks so I believed his local friends who caringly offered that I use it. At least they didn't pretend it was a shark attack. I know someone who survived one of those. I'm more caring now, and I try to look after myself and others when we venture into remote Fiordland locations to capture cinematography and generally gain inspiration from everything down there in one of the wettest places on earth. 

 

I was twelve when I received my first paid art commission, a portrait sitting. Probably because the customer had seen one of my youthful charcoal portraits. I became more interested in landscape than portraits, applied it to my love of photograpghy, and then I got interested in portraits again. I even built my own 6x17cm panoramic camera. I now build my own anamorphic lenses, and my interest in photography has extended into cinematography.

Over the course of about 10 years I  worked with wealthy clients, corporates, hotels and interior designers.  Then I relocated to the other side of the world with my family and started all over again, in a different era, and in a different way. Now my focus is on traditional mediums in a contemporary style, hand-drawn photorealism, expressionism and large mixed media artworks. That should be obvious from this website. Having said that, I have recently upskilled my photography into the 21st century with typical obsessive gusto and it influences me more than ever as I travel every corner of my adopted country and further afield.

 

After all of the above the only thing that matters is whether my next piece of art has value, presence, emotion and a reason to exist. I let my audience be the final judge of the meaning to them, whilst I plan, or stumble upon my next creative venture.

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