New Zealand-born Richard Lewer’s research-led practice references themes of sport, crime and religion across various media including drawing, painting, video and animation. Concerned with issues of cultural identity and the human condition, in particular its dark, mundane and absurd elements, Lewer recounts and distorts the narratives of people’s lives, both real and imagined.
Lewer was born in Hamilton, New Zealand in 1970, arriving in Australia in 1997. He lives and works in Melbourne. Lewer completed a Bachelor of Fine Art at Elam School of Fine Art, Auckland University, in 1992 and a Master of Visual Art at the Victorian College of the Arts in 2000. Survey exhibitions include Nobody Likes a Show-Off, Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2009; and I Must Learn to Like Myself, Waikato Museum, Hamilton, 2010. Recent solo exhibitions include Ten Commandments, Hugo Michell Gallery, Adelaide, 2013; 9 Day Swing, Fehily Contemporary, Melbourne, 2013; God Created Me in His Own Image, Gow Langsford Gallery, Auckland, 2013; and I Must Learn to Like Myself, La Trobe University Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2012. Group exhibitions include Dark Heart: 2014 Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art, curated by Nick Mitzevich, Art Gallery of South Australia, Adelaide, 2014; Melbourne Now, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2013-14; I Walk the Line, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, 2009; Freehand: Recent Australian Drawing, curated by Linda Michael, Heide Museum of Modern Art, Melbourne, 2010; and 10 Ways to Look at the Past, National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, 2011. Lewer will participate in the forthcoming Basil Sellers Art Prize, Ian Potter Museum of Art, Melbourne, 2014. His work is held in the Art Gallery of South Australia, National Gallery of Victoria, Monash University Museum of Art, University of Auckland, Ian Potter Museum at Melbourne University, University of Waikato, Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, Victoria University, National Gallery of Australia and Waikato Museum collections, as well as various private collections in Australia and New Zealand. He will hold his first exhibition with Utopian Slumps in September 2014.