b. 1967, Aotearoa New Zealand (Ngāti Koroki Kahukura, Tainui)
Lives and works in Waiuku
Brett Graham is widely recognised as one of New Zealand’s pre-eminent contemporary artists. He has been a prominent figure within the contemporary Māori art movement since the early 1990s, exhibiting widely and attracting significant accolades. He is known for his large-scale sculptures and installation works that explore indigenous histories, politics, and philosophies. Viewing his own Māori whakapapa in relation to indigenous and non-Western identities around the world, Graham’s work often explores issues of imperialism.
Graham’s work engages with a broad range of materials and forms, blending traditional craft with contemporary themes. He is adept at creating artwork with a high level of technical finesse that engage a nuanced conceptual framework. Examples of this can be seen in his sculpture series Weapons of Mass Destruction. With these works, Graham rendered such forms as a stealth bomber and an armoured car in timber, steel, and recycled tire rubber. The rubber surface of these works was carved with swirling Māori rauru patterns. Part of Graham’s intention with these works was to explore Indigenous resistance to militarisation of the Pacific, and the implications of the war on terror for New Zealand Māori.
Grahm has exhibited in a broad range of national and international contexts. He has exhibited twice at the Sydney Biennale (2006 and 2010), and at the 52nd Venice Biennale in 2007. He has been awarded a wide range of prestigious residencies throughout Te Moana-nui-a-Kiwa (the Pacific), North America, Asia and Europe. His work is included in significant collections including Te Papa Tongarewa, the National Gallery of Canada, the National Gallery of Australia, the National Gallery of Victoria and the Honolulu Museum of Art.
Gow Langsford Gallery has represented Brett Graham since 2021.
Reuben Paterson, Brett Graham and Shane Cotton in Te Hau Whakatonu | A Series of Never-Ending BeginningsLandmark survey exhibition at Govett-Brewster Art Gallery August 15, 2023Reuben Paterson, Brett Graham and Shane Cotton are included in a landmark survey exhibition at Len Lye Centre/Govett Brewster Art Gallery from 5 August 2023...
Brett Graham Nominated for 2024 Walters PrizeMarch 23, 2023Brett Graham Nominated for 2024 Walters Prize