Tony O’Keefe is an Australian born Kiwi who has been residing in Queenstown for over 25 years.
As an artist philosopher, O’Keefe combines studies in biology, physics, industrial design and information science to express his artistic identity through sculpture.
His work is in private collections in the USA, Australia and New Zealand and was recently recognised at the 2019 National Cleveland Art Awards in Dunedin, winning a Merit Prize and at the 2016 Queenstown Arts Centre Annual Art Awards, winning the Supreme Award – Best Artwork in Show.
O’Keefe’s diverse sculptural works are each based on a single principle or idea. Employing his signature materials of old steel and found objects he fuses the founding concept into beautiful, dramatic and sometimes menacing forms. Through the powerful use of symbols and stark contrast he challenges us to see everyday items, cultural artefacts and our own behaviour in new ways.
“I see art as a conversation and invite the viewer in. My work is deliberately disruptive, tactile, cryptic or controversial. It is important to me that people can interact with my artwork on as many levels as possible. By coming close and standing in the position of the artist, you may experience the artwork as I have during its creation and discover something of the meaning instilled there.”
29 May –15 Jun 2019
Exhibitions Gallery, Wellington, Solo Exhibition
3 May 2019
The Cleveland National Art Awards 2019
Dunedin, New Zealand
6 Apr 2017
Last of Summer – Remarkable Steel
Artbay Gallery, Exclusive Exhibitions
Queenstown, New Zealand
26 Nov 2016
Supreme Award, Best Artwork of the Show
2016 Annual Art Awards,
Queenstown Arts Centre
18 Nov – 26 Dec 2016
Dirty Laundry Exhibition,
The Ivy Box Gallery, Queenstown
2 Sept – 4 Oct 2016
Recycle to Upcycle, Cloakroom Gallery, Queenstown