I emerged in time for lunch one fine winter's afternoon in the Hutt Valley, Wellington on July the 18th 1972. I spent the first 24 years of my life in Miramar and Seatoun in the capital city of Wellington, Aotearoa/ New Zealand.
I took practical art and art history subjects at St Patricks College, Kilbirnie, Wellington under the fine tutelage of Peter Healy, Fr Donaghue, and Rob Taylor.
On leaving school at the end of 1990 I temporarily abandoned the visual arts in search of a music career and worked as a desktop publisher.
In 1996 I went to St Gallen, Switzerland to study with my uncle, artist Norlando Pobre.
While in Europe I travelled and visited galleries in southern Germany, Austria, Italy, wales and england and ended up living in a garden shed in Skibbereen,Ireland.

I returned to Aotearoa in 1997 and settled in the Waikato where I proceeded to develop a permaculture farm with my family on 2 hectres of land in Ngaruawahia. This also gave me the opportunity to resume my work in the visual arts, and also devote time to writing.

In 2003 I spent 3 months in the town of Zumarraga, in Euskal Herria (The Basque Country) on a painting sabatical, returning through California to research sustainable horticulture.

I am now back in Aotearoa. For several years I was editor of the newsletter for the Waikato Branch of the NZ Tree Crops Association, winning the award of "Newsletter Editor of the Year" at the 2007 Association Conference. As well as my involvement with our family land, I have continued writing and painting, and am currently preparing for another exhibition.


  (C) James Benton 2004