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Born in Auckland and educated at St. Kentigern College, Pakuranga, Hanna began his career in design, working as a graphic designer, illustrator, art-director and studio manager.
Now a full-time painter, Hanna’s superbly executed works reveal impressive draughtsmanship and skilled manipulation of paint, combined with a uniquely dry, witty sense of humour. As with other surrealists, Hanna’s imagery is often a bizarre interpretation of the familiar, reminiscent of dreams and metamorphosis. Like other surrealists, Hanna juxtaposes objects and images in irrational ways and employs realistic representation to heighten the incongruities and at times, surprise, his audience.
The “Surrealist Movement” was ‘officially’ launched in Paris, France, in 1924 when French writer Andre Breton wrote the first surrealist manifesto, outlining the ambitions of the new movement. Almost eighty years later, Grant Hanna remains one of few New Zealand artists recognised for their commitment to working exclusively in this style.
Hanna’s paintings and drawings are held in private and public collections in New Zealand, Australia, the USA and the United Kingdom.