Peter van Sommers

Photography . Paintings . Drawings . Printing

Biographical note

Peter van Sommers is a painter, printer and photographer, born in Melbourne, Australia in June 1930.
Both his father and stepfather (Eric Thake) were painters and graphic artists. His older step-sister, Tess van Sommers is a talented writer and journalist, his daughter Jenny van Sommers a top-line international professional photographer.

Peter graduated with Honours at the University of Melbourne in psychology. He was a Fulbright Fellow and
did his PhD at Harvard University in the early sixties and later became Head of Behavioural Sciences at Macquarie University. His academic specialties were neuropsychology, cognitive science and human emotions.

In 1990 he was invited to the position of Visiting Associate Professor in Design (Visual Communication) at Sydney College of the Arts and thence to Design at UTS. During his ten years in the design school Peter enlarged his skills and resources in photography and digital printing, specializing amongst other things in high-resolution botanical photography.

He has had a number of mixed and solo ex hibitions including two very successful shows at Sturt Gallery in Mittagong, NSW. His recent photographs of Pakistan (including the Hindu Kush and Swat Valley) have been exhibited at the Customs House Gallery at Circular Quay in Sydney and his work from Tokyo at Kinokuniya Gallery.

He has travelled widely, visiting almost every country in the Middle East and Asia as well as Europe. As well as being a painter and drawer, he has worked extensively in pastel and exhibited his etchings. Peter is the author of a number of books, the current one being on the theory and practice of colour in art and design.
He does his own colour printing and Epson have featured his work in their convention displays and sponsor
his exhibitions.