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About Mike Armstrongs Work

About Mike Armstrong Works

“I have been intellectuallly engaged with formal issues and with the concepts that revolve around the role of painting in society.” — Michael Armstrong.

An interplay and tension between conventions of painting and those of sculpture have been an on-going current in Armstrong’s work. This dynamism is allied with a vibrant and spontaneous use of paint conveyed in painterly brushwork and an often disconcerting amalgam of colour. The conjunction of form with calligraphic flow is common to all his works whether on canvas, board or aluminium. Radical changes in structure have run in parallel with gradual refinements of content..


Armstrong has had numerous solo and group shows in galleries throughout New Zealand. He has also exhibited in Australia. He has been recipient of two major grants and one travel grant from QE2 Arts Council (between 1981-1985).


His numerous awards include the prestigious Francis Hodgkins Fellowship (1984); he also received CSA Guthrey Travel Award in 1990. Armstrong ’s work is held in private and public collections throughout New Zealand.

Mike Armstrongs

Alison Pearson writes:

(Art New Zealand, Number 74/Autumn 1995)


“ Although Armstrong says, ‘painting is my expression, my moods change when it is kept from me,’ the cathartic process in his art does not supercede aesthetics. His observations are both personal and objective, individualistic and analytical.
Life entertains him. His love of drawing the smirk and the scowl, pithy wit and pallid sentiment, will continue to find expression in his discourses with humanity, in the solid and void of his psycho-drama…”

Overview of Mike: education, family, teaching

Overview of Mike: education, family, teaching


Michael Armstrong was born in Christchurch in 1954. Educated St Andrews College, Christchurch. He graduated from University of Canterbury School of Fine Arts in 1976 (Diploma in Fine Arts, Painting Major). In 2005-2007 Armstrong undertook Post- Graduate Studies at Canterbury University, School of Fine Arts, and is currently working on a Master of Fine Arts. Michael Armstrong has been a tutor in art at Aoraki Polytech, Timaru, since 1994. Michael lives in Timaru with his wife Glenys Parry and his two sons.