heather grouden


I attended the University of Canterbury in Christchurch at the age of 17, graduating in 1965 with a Diploma of Fine Arts. Marriage followed with two daughters born in 1966 and 1969.

In 1977, I moved to Coromandel with my daughters and spent 6 years working at Driving Creek Pottery with Barry Brickell.

A move to Auckland gave the opportunity to do a post-graduate year at the Auckland College of Education. I graduated with a Diploma of Teaching in 1985.

The following years were spent teaching, travelling and working extensively as a sculptor; exhibiting and working mainly on commissioned pieces as diverse as a bronze and silver chess set for a private collector, portrait heads, and the large relief 'Head of Mercury' for the Capital Gateway shopping complex in Wellington

I now live and work in Auckland and focus on painting.

Group Exhibitions





2010 Le Sa Gallery Group Shows, Petone, Wellington

2005 NorthArt Members Show

2000 Artigiano Gallery Group Show, Parnell, Auckland


1994 Winspear's Studio Show, Cave Rock gallery, Christchurch

1993 “New Views of Wellington” NZ Academy of Fine Arts, Wellington

Solo Shows

2013 “Natural Selection” NorthArt Members Gallery, Auckland

2006 “New Work” NorthArt

1999 “In House” exhibition, private home, Remuera, Auckland

1996 “Remembered Images of the Land” Turnbull House, Wellington

During this time, I have again worked extensively on commissioned work, with work in private collection in Helsinki Finland and Sydney Australia.


This series of paintings represents an exploration of colour as a metaphor for other realities. In our divided world, our only protection is to become aware of the power of imagination, of a kind of poetry, which transcends human differences and brings us closer to mystery and meaning.

Intrinsic to this experience has been my long interest in the research into colour by the German philosopher, writer and scientist, J.W. Goethe. He established that colour is not split-up white light but the dynamic interaction of both light and dark. Hence darkness is not an absence of light but an active presence. The colours arise from this interactivity of light and darkness.

This interplay creates its own relationship in space as the colours advance and recede within the compositional context. Their relationship can be sensed almost musically with each nuance and shift of tone and colour being critical in determining the thematic character and balance of the whole.