Tony de Lautour

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Print by Tony de Lautour

Tony de Lautour is a prominent New Zealand artist, coming to public attention in a generation of 1988 graduates of the University of Canterbury’s School of Fine Arts like Seraphine Pick, Peter Robinson and Shane Cotton. Over the years his symbolic vocabulary of symbols drawn from amateur tattoos, heraldry and white trash culture have evolved and the “found” paintings of the 1990s have evolved into an exploration of the twentieth century modernist avant-garde. De Lautour’s work often deals with the land and issues of ownership, ranging from colonial history to the issues of post-quake Christchurch zoning.

Born in Melbourne to New Zealander parents and living here since the age of two, De Lautour is very much a Christchurch artist. In 1995 he won the Visa Gold Art Award and has exhibited regularly throughout New Zealand and in Australia. His work has shown in important exhibitions like Hangover (1995-6), Bright Paradise: First Auckland Triennial (2000), and Prospect 2001: New Art New Zealand (2001). In 2012 he became a recipient of an Arts Foundation Laureate Award. His works have been acquired for major public and private collections, including Auckland Art Gallery, Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand, the National Gallery of Australia; Chartwell Trust Collection, the Govett-Brewster Art Gallery, the National Library of New Zealand, the Sarjeant Art Gallery, and Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū. The major survey show US V THEM showed at Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū (2018) and Dunedin Public Art Gallery (2019).

Dr Andrew Paul Wood