The key to understanding the work of artist Marie Le Lievre is that everything depends on an interplay between what is revealed and what the artist obscures, a dialogue between private inscape and public world. 

Le Lievre’s work divides into five loosely overlapping categories. One is the sensitive drawings; another is the painted-on photographic self-portraits. A third is the “writing” works and fourth the “paraphernalia” paintings with their stylised motifs. Fifth are the “slip” paintings, in which layers of translucent oil pigment are poured onto the canvas flat on the floor and worked by the artist with gloved hands in a very physical process. 

Born in Wellington, New Zealand, Marie Le Lievre studied Criminology and Education before focussing upon her artistic career in Fine Arts. She travelled extensively abroad while living and working in London, Israel and Argentina. Her work is represented by Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch and acquired by major art collectors such as Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu and Fletcher Trust, Auckland. She currently lives and works as a full time artist in Lyttelton.


  • 2008 MFA (Distinction) Painting, University of Canterbury, School of Fine Arts, NZ
  • 2007 BFA Honours (First Class) Painting, University of Canterbury, School of Fine Arts, NZ
  • 1996 BA Degree, Criminology, Victoria University, Wellington, New Zealand



  • 2021 Finalist, Parkin Drawing Prize
  • 2021 Finalist, Molly Morpeth Canady Award 
  • 2020 Awarded CNZ Continuity Grant
  • 2018 Finalist, Parkin Prize
  • 2018 Selected Finalist, Wallace Art Award
  • 2017 Finalist, New Zealand Painting and Printmaking
  • 2016 Highly Commended, Parkin Prize
  • 2013 Finalist, Parkin Prize
  • 2011 Inaugural Recipient, Canterbury Arts and Heritage Trust Award
  • 2011 Selected Finalist, Wallace Art Award
  • 2009 Highly Commended, Anthony Harper Award
  • 2008 Masters Scholarship, University of Canterbury
  • 2008 Ethel Rose Overton Scholarship
  • 2008 Graduates Scholarship, University of Canterbury
  • 2008 Selected Finalist, James Wallace Award
  • 2007 Bickerton-Widdowson Scholarship
  • 2006 Bickerton-Widdowson Scholarship

Selected Collections