Peter Peryer

Erika c 1979

1979. Printed 1988.
gelatin silver print
405mm x 268mm

signed Peter Peryer, inscribed Erika c 1979, This print was made 25/2/88, No final prints made prior to this date and [brooch] in graphite verso; Dunedin Public Art Gallery Label affixed upper right verso

Provenance

Private collection, New Plymouth.

Exhibitions

Erika: A Portrait by Peter Peryer, curated by Justin Paton, Dunedin Public Art Gallery, 20 January – 1 April 2001; City Gallery Wellington, 13 July – 16 September 2001; Auckland Art Gallery Toi O Tamaki, 10 November 2001 – 27 January 2002.

Essay

When Peter Peryer first began taking photographs in the early 1970s, his practice centred on portraiture. His pool of sitters was relatively small and consisted largely of frien...

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Estimate $6,000 - $9,000
Achieved $12,312.81

Peter Peryer

Erika c 1979

1979. Printed 1988.

gelatin silver print

signed Peter Peryer, inscribed Erika c 1979, This print was made 25/2/88, No final prints made prior to this date and [brooch] in graphite verso; Dunedin Public Art Gallery Label affixed upper right verso

405mm x 268mm

Auction N˚5

Estimate $6,000 - $9,000

Achieved $12,312.81

Erika

by Serena Bentley

When Peter Peryer first began taking photographs in the early 1970s, his practice centred on portraiture. His pool of sitters was relatively small and consisted largely of friends, acquaintances and the artist himself. One subject Peryer continued to revisit was his then-wife, Erika Parkinson, who features in some of his most noteworthy early works. From the mid-1970s to the mid-1980s Peryer photographed his wife repeatedly. This focus on a single sitter was not unlike that of his American contemporaries Nicholas Nixon, Harry Callaghan and Emmet Gowan, whose work Peryer admired.

Peryer’s early photographs reveal his interest in exploring the expressive potential of the medium. They are the antithesis of “smile for the camera” snapshot photographs. Peryer directed and often dressed his sitters, assembling an image in his head for weeks, even months, before finally picking up his camera. Accordingly, Peryer has referred to these carefully composed portraits as film stills, an appropriate observation when considering the meticulous preparation involved in each “shoot.”