Peter Clarke
Peter Clarke Peter Clarke

Peter E Clarke

b. 1929 Simon’s Town, d. 2014, Ocean View, South Africa.
Peter Clarke was, indeed is, a giant. Evidence of his achievements are narrated in numerous tributes, obituaries and testimonies. Clarke’s graphic works and paintings affirm the dignity of everyday Black life. Exploring flattened, angular forms, and working with highly deliberate palettes, Clarke’s images reflect a spirit of experimentation, digging beyond the typical conventions of landscape and portrait work that defined his times.


Karibuna Festival – 1989

Karibuna Festival


Natale Labia Exhibition – 1992

Natale Labia-Museum Exhibition (Afrikaans)


Snailpress Letter and Book jacket – 1997



Carapace 64 Poetry Selection – 2007

Carapace 64 - Poetry Selection


Impressions Catalogue – 2009

exhibition 2009_a hot and quiet evening_university of the west indies


Ashbey’s Catalogue – 2010

Ashbey's Catalogue - 10 June 2010


Cavershams Catalogue – June 2010

Caversham Brochure


Portrait of The Artist – Wanted Magazine article by Sean ‘O Toole

Sean O Toole, Portrait of the artist as a spry old man, Wanted, March 2011, p 20 - 22


Listening to Distant Thunder,The Art of Peter Clarke Catalogue – May 2011


Listening to Distant Thunder,The Art of Peter Clarke Pamphlet – May 2011

Listening to Distant Thunder - Standard Bank Exhibition Pamphlet


Art times – May 2011

SA Art Times - May 2011- Peter Clarke Article


Report of The Chairperson of The Friends of The South African National Gallery – December 2011

Report - Friends of Museum


Standard Bank Learning Resource Brochure

Standard Bank Learning Resource


Dak’Art – 2012

Dak'Art 2012


Stephen Welz – February 2013

Stephen Welz & Co. Auction Brochure


Mine is the Silent Face (French and English magazine clipping) – 2013

Mine is the Silent Face


Weekend Argus, newspaper clipping – November 2013

Weekend Argus - Auction


Lize Van Robbroekc – Listening to Distant Thunder – The Art of Peter Clarke (review)

Review on Listening to Distant Thunder by Lize Van Robbroeck


Peter Clarke – Just Paper and Glue

Peter Clarke Just Paper and Glue


Listening to Distant Thunder: The Art of Peter ClarkeElizabeth Rankin & Philippa Hobbs

Listening to Distant Thunder, Peter Clarke

Elizabeth Rankin & Philippa Hobbs – Listening to Distant Thunder: The Art of Peter Clarke

Read book

Peter Clarke: FanfarePeter Clarke & Michael Stevenson

Michael Stevenson & Peter Clarke – Peter Clarke: Fanfare

Michael Stevenson & Peter Clarke – Peter Clarke: Fanfare

Read book

More Than Brothers: Peter Clarke and James Mathews at 70, Hein Willemse (ed)

Hein Willemse (ed) – More Than Brothers: Peter Clarke and James Mathews at 70

Hein Willemse (ed) – More Than Brothers: Peter Clarke and James Mathews at 70

Read book

Art Education

1962 - 1963: Royal Academy for Graphic Art, Amsterdam.
1961: Michaelis School of Fine Art (mentored by Katherine Harries), University of Cape Town, Cape Town.

Solo Exhibitions (South Africa)

2023: For Some the Pathway to Education Lies Between Thorns. Springs Art Gallery, Gauteng
2013: Peter Clarke - Just Paper And Glue. Stevenson Gallery, Cape Town.
2011: Listening to Distant Thunder: The Art of Peter Clarke. Iziko South African National Gallery, Cape Town; Standard Bank Gallery, Johanneburg.
2009: Woorde en Beelde. Breytenbach Sentrum, Wellington.
2009: A Hot and Quiet Evening. Kalk Bay Modern, Cape Town.
2008: Second Childhood. Association for Visual Arts, Cape Town.
2006: Menu. Kalk Bay Modern, Cape Town.
2004 - 2005: Fanfare. Michael Stevenson, Cape Town.
1998 - 1999: Vital Expressions. Association of Visual Arts (AVA) Gallery, Cape Town; Technikon Natal Art Gallery, Durban.
1999: A Personal View. Lipschitz Gallery, Cape Town.
1999: Drawings of Tesselaardsal. Caledon Museum, Caledon.
1995: Small World. Full Stop Coffee Shop, Cape Town.
1992: The hand is the tool of the soul. Natale Labia Museum, Cape Town.
1981: Illusions and Others' Realities. Atlantic Gallery, Cape Town.
1977 - 1978: Exhibition Grassy Park Public Library, Cape Town.
1977: Our World is a Ghetto. Association of of Visual Arts (AVA) Gallery, Cape Town.
1970: Exhibition. Edrich Gallery, Stellenbosch.
1957: Exhibition. Golden City Post, Cape Town.

Solo Exhibitions (International)

2013: Peter Clarke: Wind Blowing on the Cape Flats, Retrospective. Institute of International Visual Artists (INIVA), London.
2012: Dak'Art 2012 (Honourary Guest Artist), Dakar.
2009: A Hot Quiet Evening. University of West Indies, Barbados
2000: Exhibition. Bertold Brecht House, Berlin; Media Centre, Exeter, Devon.
1984: Exhibition. Jerusalem Artist's House, Palestine.
1978 - 1979: Exhibition. Sandvika Kino Vestibyle, Sandvika.
1973-1974: Exhibition. Fisk University, Nashville.
1965: Exhibition. Mbari Cultural Centre, Ibadan.
1965: Exhibition. Chemi-Chemi Cultural Centre, Nairobi.

Group Exhibitions (South Africa)

2024: Being/Present. Glen Carlou Gallery, Stellenbosch.
2023: Loud and Clear. SMAC Gallery, Cape Town.
2022: Customs. A4 Arts Foundation, Cape Town.
2021: The Long Table. SMAC Gallery, Cape Town.
2021: Works on Paper. Stevenson, Cape Town.
2020: ONLINE: Sense of Place. Goodman gallery, Johannesburg.
2019: Holding Still: Psychology and Portraiture. SMAC Gallery, Johannesburg.
2018: Notes on Spectrality, Sorcery and the Spirit. Norval Museum, Cape Town.
2018: Peter Clarke and Lionel Davis: Die Bou van Die Oog - The Composition of the Eye. SMAC Gallery, Stellenbsoch.
2017: X: Part I. SMAC Gallery, Stellenbosch.
2013: The Loom of the Land. Stevenson, Johannesburg.
2011: Collection 13. SMAC Gallery, Cape Town.
2010: Hats off: 25 Years, Linocuts from Caversham. Tokara, Stellenbosch.
2010: Artists of the South. Old Library Hall, Simonstown, Cape Town.
2010: Joburg Art Fair. Johannesburg.
2010: Divisions: Aspect of South Africa Art 1948 - 2010. SMAC Gallery, Stellenbosch.
2010: 1910-2010: From Pierneef to Gugulective. Iziko South African National Gallery (ISANG), Cape Town.
2010: Homage, Michaelis Gallery. Cape Town.
2009: Strengths and Convictions. Iziko South African National Gallery (ISANG), Cape Town.
2009: The Art of the Relief Print. Iziko South African National Gallery (ISANG), Cape Town.
2008: Collection 10. SMAC Gallery, Stellenbosch.
2008: Revisions: Expanding the Narrative of South African Art. SMAC Gallery, Stellenbosch.
2008: JOHN KRAMER: Painter of the South African small town. Rose Korber Art, Cape Town. 
2007: Africa South. AVA, Cape Town.
2006: Botaki 4. Old Mutual Asset Managers, Cape Town.
2005: Botaki 3. OMAM, Cape Town.
2003: Exhibited in AVA Surface=/=Print, as part of Impact Conference, Cape Town
2002: Exhibition. Warren Siebrits Modern and Contemporary, Johannesburg.
2001: MICROMACRO. South African National Library, Cape Town.
1993: I wish you well on your way (Tribute to John Muafangejo). Chelsea Gallery, Cape Town.
1991: Gallery International (with Willie Bester, Isaac Makeleni and Ishmael Thyssen), Cape Town.
1983: Minor Events and Situations, Bellville Art Gallery, Cape Town.

Group Exhibitions (International)

2024: African Modernism in America. Taft Museum of Art, Cincinatti.
2023: No Feeling is Final: The Skopje Solidarity Collection. Kunsthalle Wien, Museumsquartier, Vienna
2022: Abstraction 22. Charles Nodrum Gallery, Richmond.
2021: Emerging Masters 2021. Laguna Art Museum, California.
2019: Melbourne Modern: European art & design at RMIT since 1945. RMIT Gallery, Melbourne.
2019: Abstraction 19. Charles Nodrum Gallery, Richmond. 
2018: Chaos and Order, 120 years of collecting at RMIT. RMIT Gallery, Melbourne.
2015: Abstraction 14. Charles Nodrum Gallery, Richmond.
2014: Bank Gallery at The Lightbox: Borderlands. The Lightbox, Surrey.
2014: Vista II. Charles Nodrum Gallery, Richmond.
2013: Portrait de l’Afrique du Sud: An exhibition of artworks by George Hallett, Peter Clarke and Gerard Sekoto. Iziko National Gallery, Paris.
2011: Slowness. Monash University Museum of Art, Melbourne.
2009: Strengths and Convictions. Nobel Peace Centre, Oslo.
2007: Apartheid - The South African Mirror. Centro Cultural Bacanja of Valencia, Barcelona.
1995: 18th International Independent Exhibition of Prints. Kanagawa.
1994: 3rd World Triennale of Small Format Prints. Chamalières-Auvergne.
1992: Zeitzeichen - Art from Contemporary Africa. Museum fur Volkerkunde, Frankfurt; St Virgil Bildungshaus, Satzburg.
1990: Freedom Now: Nambian Independence Exhibition. Windhoek.
1989: Exhibition. Rahmen Gallerie (with Tyrone Appollis and Ishmael Thyssen), Langei.
1986: Botschaften aus Sudafrika. Museum fur Volkerkunde, Frankfurt.
1985: 10th International Triennale fur originale grafik, Grenchen.
1984: Norwergian International Print Bienniale, Frederikstad.
1983 - 1984: 9th International Independent Exhibition of Prints, Kanagawa.
1982: Culture and Resistance Conference, Gaborone.
1979 - 1982: Norway Series of Graphic Art. Aterlier Nord, Oslo.
1973: Benefit Exhibition of Graphics. Pratt Graphics Centre, New York.
1972: Tercera Bienniale Internacionale del Grabado de Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires.
1971: South African Graphics. Netherlands; Belgium; then West Germany.
1969: 2nd Exhibition of International Graphics. Palazzo Strozzo, Florence.
1968: 1st Exhibition of International Graphics. Palazzo Strozzo, Florence.
1965: 6th International Graphic Art Biennale, Ljubljana.
1964: XXXII Bienale de Venezia, Venice.
1963: 5th International Graphic Art Biennale, Ljubljana; Albertine Museum, Vienna.
1960 - 1961: South African Graphic Art. Ljubljana; Gallery Schononger, Munich; Sao Paulo.

Workshops & Residencies

2005: Caversham Press, KZN, South Africa.
1983: United States -South Africa Leadership Exchange Programme, Rustenberg, South Africa.
1976: Kuumbe Workshop, Southside, Chicago. 1975: University of Iowa, USA.


Public collections in South Africa, Norway, Australia, USA, Germany, Yugoslavia, Botswana, Netherlands.


(Books, magazines, newspapers and catalogues)

2023: Kimberley Schoeman, 'Going, going, gone... for millions'. Mail & Guardian: Johannesburg
2022: Iziko Sang, 'A Walkabout with Andrew Lamprecht'. ArtThrob: South Africa
2022: Roberto Vidali, 'A Century of Black Figuration in Painting'. Juliet: Italy
2018: 'SPRING 18 Auction'. ArtAfrica: South Africa
2014: Philippa Hobbs, Elizabeth Rankin, Listening to Distant Thunder: The Art of Peter Clarke, Struik Nature/ Penguin Random House: South Africa.
2011: Sean O'Toole, Portrait of the artist as a spry old man, Business Day Magazine Supplement, March, pp. 20-22.
2009: Darren Newbury, Defiant Images: Photography and Anti-Apartheid South Africa, UNISA Press, Pretoria.
2009: Alex Dodd, Frederico Freschi, Imaging and Imagining : South African art c. 1896-2008, Grahams Fine Art Gallery: Johannesburg.
2008: Catalogue no 6. Annual Report, William Humphreys Art Gallery, Swiftprint: Kimberley.
2008: Gavin Jantjes, Strengths and Convictions, Press Publishing, Cape Town.
2008: Prestige Magazine, Neo Publishing, Johannesburg.
2008: Bronwyn Law-Viljoen, Art and Justice: The Art of the Constitutional Court of South Africa, David Krut Publishing, Johannesburg.
2008: Joburg Art Fair, Johannesburg: Artlogic.
2007: Kim Gurney, Dignity and Quiet Fanfare, Art South Africa, vol. 05 issue 03 Autumn.
2006: Donvé Lee, Peter Clarke: Following Dreams and Finding Fame, Awareness Publishing Group, Gallo Manor, Johannesburg.
2006: Hayden Proud, ReVisions+: Expanding the narrative of South African Art, Unisa Press, Pretoria.
2006: George Hallett, Portraits of African Writers, Wits University Press, Johannesburg.
2005: Kim Gurney, Clarke, Pinker and Nel, Art South Africa vol. 03 issue 03 Autumn, p71.
2005: Mario Pissarra, Botaki 3: Conversations with Donovan Ward, Old Mutual Asset Management, Cape Town.
2005: Mario Pissarra, Botaki 2: Conversations with Sophie Peters, Old Mutual Asset Management, Cape Town.
2004: Sophie Perryer (ed.) 10 years 100 artists: Art in a Democratic South Africa, Bell Roberts Publishing, Cape Town.
2004: M Stevenson Fanfare: Peter Clarke in conversation with Michael Stevenson, David Krut Publishing, Johannesburg.
2002: Oprah Magazine, April - May issue.
2000: Hein Willemse (ed.) More than brothers: Peter Clarke and James Matthews at seventy, Kwela Books, Cape Town.
1997: Elza Miles, Land and lives: a story of early black artists, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Johannesburg.
1992: Patricia Hardy, Peter E Clarke: the hand is the tool of the soul, South African National Gallery, Cape Town.
1988: Gavin Younge, Art of the South African Townships, Thames and Hudson, London.
1988: Grania Ogilvie, The Dictionary of South African Painters and Sculptors, Everard Read, Johannesburg.


2010: Arts and Culture Trust Lifetime Achievement Award.
2005: Order of Ikhamanga, silver class, for excellence in Art and Literature.
1984: Honorary Doctor of Literature, World Academy of Arts and Culture, Taipei.
1984: Honorary Life Member, Museum of African American Art, Los Angeles.
1982: Book illustration award for A message in the wind by Chris Van Wyk.
1982: Diploma of Merit, Art, Universita delle Arti, Salso Maggiore Terme Pr., Italy.
1975: Honorary Fellow in Writing, University of Iowa, Iowa City.
1965: C.P. Hoogenhout Book-illustration Award for Snoet-alleen by Frida Linder.
1965: Avvademico Onorario, Accademia Florentina delle Arti del Disegno, Florence.
1955: Drum International Short-story Award.

Other Involvement

Numerous poems and short stories published in South Africa, USA, Sweden and Norway.
Taught art in Ocean View.
Founder member of Vakalisa.


Candice Allison, Peter Clarke: There was always tomorrow, (ASAI, 2021)
Mario Pissarra, Some thoughts on Peter Clarke, (ASAI, 2014)