Peter Vandermark is a Canberra based artist whose practice explores the interplay between function and form. Interested in the way in which life and art integrate both on the domestic and public level, Peter’s work incorporates elements inspired by architecture, furnishings, models, maquettes and design. His carefully constructed pieces are created through the repurposing of found objects resulting in both recognisable and abstract forms. Old chairs, wooden toys, signage and ducting, amongst other remnants of our daily lives, are broken down and reassembled, painted and transformed. As he says “my practice is devoted to exploring the implications of the designed environment on human spatial ecology, that is, the scale, dimensions and textures of inhabitation. Sculpture is always a study in proxemics, human proxemics.” Art critic Professor Sasha Grishin says of his work “…Vandermark has established for himself a reputation as one of the most provocative, inventive, witty, cerebral yet challenging sculptors of his time. There is a refined elegance in his creations while beneath the immaculate façade there is a certain toughness tinged with the feeling of unease. While it is fashionable amongst a generation of younger sculptors to create objects which achieve a high level of fidelity to natural appearances in unusual materials, Vandermark is not primarily concerned with such trompe l’oeil strategies. In his work it is more important to seduce the eye then trick the mind into discovering a new and quite often troubling social reality.”
Peter Vandermark graduated with a Bachelor of Visual Arts from the Australian National University, School of Art in 1989. He has exhibited widely since graduating and his works are in several major collections including the National Gallery of Australia, ACT Legislative Assembly, Australian National University and the Canberra Museum and Gallery. Peter’s sculpture has been included in the Canberra Art Biennial (formerly Contour 556) in 2016, 2020 and 2022. He worked as a studio assistant to Rosalie Gascoigne for many years and continues to work professionally in several areas of the arts. Peter will have his first solo exhibition with Beaver Galleries in March 2022.