Born in Auckland in 1971, Glen Wolfgramm is of Tongan and Irish descent. He lives and works in Auckland and has been exhibiting since 1998. He has held nine solo shows, has participated in the Biennale d'Art Contemporain in Noumea alongside Michael Parekowhai and Lisa Reihana, and has been a finalist in numerous art awards.

Much of the dynamic tension in Wolfgramm's work stems from the conflicting cultures that define his current life and ancestry. With an Irish mother and a Tongan father, Wolfgramm looks upon Tonga as a "foreign homeland"; yet he also considers himself "an ordinary Kiwi" within a changing New Zealand ethnographic landscape, where the Pacific is not only where we 'are' but increasingly where we are 'from'.

For Wolfgramm, paintings are narratives of migration, beginning as the brush first darkens the canvas and unfolding their stories until they are told. Layered with ardent colour and inky structures both stark and submerged, Wolfgramm's works recount histories through the weaving of forms, their ebbs and flows. Though it references both Celtic and Polynesian motifs, Wolfgramm's work is primarily concerned with giving expression to contemporary cultural experience.


10 new paintings

27 September - 15 October 2016

This show can be read as short stories, each one to be observed in isolation, swirling within the current of a larger body of work. Wolfgramm crafts smaller than usual works, nets containing his language, pulling it in, weaving images, making it a dense, slow read, with marks depicting real, and imagined, events. work.


15 July - 2 August 2014

After a sustained period of working monochromatically, colour makes a dramatic re-entry into Glen Wolfgramm's latest work.


2 - 20 October 2012

Wolfgramm explores the severity of black and white by adding a new medium: indian ink. The transparent and lyrical qualities of the ink add a luminousity and softness to some of the works, not seen before in Wolfgramm's work. All the works have a distinct quality of their own ranging from the mellifluous 'Satellite State' to the burning intensity of 'Subculture'.


19 October - 13 November 2010

"[Wolfgramm's] paintings have a strong physicality. There is nothing virtual here. That they are handmade is fore-grounded. There is a sense of the artist immersed in his medium, marking out the spaces he inhabits, as if attempting to map some new territory.

- Leonard Bell Where Are We? Glen Wolfgramm's Come Here Palangi Art New Zealand, No. 138, 2011


25 August - 12 September 2009

"Every painting is a chapter, a verse, a laying down of history, a voice that is passing the experience of my forebears to me, and through me, and on, out into the wide world. The paintings are like boats being built, leaving home, migrating, settling, making new homes, telling new stories, living, breathing, passing on."

- Glen Wolfgramm, 2009

Amok (2014) Acrylic on canvas 1300 x 1600mm


Serpents (2016) acrylic and ink on canvas 930 x 460mm


Site (2010) Acrylic, enamel and ink on canvas 2200 x 5000mm


Subculture (2012) Acrylic, Indian ink and varnish on canvas 900 x 2000mm


Satellite State (2012) Acrylic, Indian ink and varnish on canvas 900 x 2000mm


Hood X (2013) Acrylic, graphite & ink on a car-hood 1300 x 1400mm


Toothpaste (2016) Acrylic and ink on canvas 903 x 460mm


Know Your Place (2012) Acrylic, Indian ink and varnish on canvas 1800 x 3000mm


Islander (2013) Acrylic, Indian ink and varnish on loose canvas 2100 x 3900mm


Know Show (2014) Acrylic on canvas 1300 x 1600mm


Blue (2014) Acrylic on canvas 1300 x 1600mm


Taha (2018) acrylic on board 1800mm diameter tondo