top of page
DSC_2164 2.jpeg
About David

An Artist’s disclosure

There is nothing I have seen anyone doing that I would rather do, yet

there is nothing so exasperating, disturbing and rewarding to me as

drawing and painting.



From the age of six my architect father noticed my curiosity and

attempts to render my three dimensional world two-dimensionally. He

gave me an early grasp of the phenomenon of perspective that

continues to remain one of my most powerful perceptual tools. Along

with those, the control of colour and form were taught by my art


These tools allow me to create the illusion of light, space and form on a

flat surface.

After a lifetime of painting I know that this methodology and style are not

‘gifts’, but rather skills acquired through commitment and constant



Getting started

Before starting a painting I need to achieve a state of stilling usually

attended by rituals of preparation of a board, brushes, paints and may

include memories or references to the original on-site working sketch,

often with notes scribbled on the image.



When I paint I see only pure transparent colour in patches, dots, lines

and edges - then quite suddenly toward the end, the illusion of



As my American artist friend, Ed Maher described - ‘Out of a very

unlikely combination of squiggles and washes emerges an intensely

realistic magical landscape’.



Water expresses and displays light better than any subject I have

studied. I wanted to deal with this complexity of optical illusions. I have

learnt that there are number of painterly devices with which the illusion

of brilliance can be induced. That this incredible illusion can be rendered

so persuasively continues to mystify me.

Water nearly always appears somewhere in my landscapes. Gradually

seeping in until some works show no dry land at all.

As Noel Fuller said - ‘I have spent a lot of time gazing over water and

looking through reflections into the places of silence, rhythm, solitude

and untiy. I have felt the touch of these places in David’s paintings.’


To counteract the mostly private occupation of drawing and painting, one

of my other interests is in the physical, competitive and social world of

sailing and boating.

Other avenues of particular interest to me are in architecture, multi-hull

yacht design, travel, photography, music, reading, documentary film

making, film, theatre and friendships, spreading now all over the world.

I sailed aboard a 50ft steel yacht to Antarctica, roamed Mexico on a bus,

and Russia by rail. I have walked through Italian towns, visited most of

the British Isles, the Greek Isles, coastal Turkey, and Panama by ship.

Lived in Fijian villages, been a guest in German shipyards, seen some

of Finland and travelled in Japan as a student.


With my wife, Tanya we at different times established studios in the Gulf

Islands of British Columbia, Canada, on the Giudecca in Venice, Italy,

and in London, while always maintaining a New Zealand studio, first in

KeriKeri and now Devonport.

My visual home has thus become large areas of the world.


I am fortunate indeed.




Brief CV

Born: 1941, Chichester, England

Emigrated 1951: Auckland, New Zealand

School: Takapuna Grammar School

Tertiary education: Diploma Fine Arts (Hons) Elam School of Fine Art,

Auckland, New Zealand

Masters in Fine Art, East West Centre, Hawaii University, USA

Exhibitions and Collections: galleries and private homes in Australia,

Austria, Canada, Fiji, Finland, France, Ireland, Italy, Japan, New

Caledonia, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, the United Kingdom,

the United States of America, and the USSR.

There are various publications and a whole collection of illustrated log



My Gallery Details

The works shown on this site in the attached projects below are for sale

directly from my studio.

The price agreed on the works include packaging, insuring, mailing or

delivering by courier to your nominated address.

The frames on the larger works are already hand finished by me but if

preferred, works may also be sent unframed. Sketches and small

watercolours are mostly unframed.

I often undertake commissions for paintings and murals.


I also like to teach two to five day art workshops where individual

success can be assured as there are no secrets.

My studio is in Devonport, Auckland, New Zealand.

Mailing address:

P O Box 32-194


Auckland, 0744

New Zealand

tel: +64(0).9.445. 9970

David’s mob: +64(0).21.0875.8710

Tanya’s mob:+64(0).27.914.1862


finland 2011 32.jpeg

DAVID BARKER, Artist Dip. Fine Arts (Hons), Master of Fine Arts

RNZYS 00.jpg

David Barker

bottom of page