Michael Hight (b.1961) is a self-taught artist who has been painting since the age of fourteen. During the 1990s, Hight's focus was on abstract series of work which he enjoyed for their element of chance, and the subsequent uncertainty of outcome. These series - Heartland Trinkets (1992-93), In Trust (1995) and Seven Rivers (1995) - fused images and materials found at particular places he had visited, in an attempt to reproduce a sense of those places. In Four Strong Winds (1996), Hight wanted to create works about rivers using as his starting point Bernini's 'Four Rivers' Fountain in Rome. Again, he used found materials, this time from Italy, England and France, to make 'portraits' of images and forms from different places there. His 1998 exhibition, Maungakakaramea, dealt with places and landmarks from his childhood days in Kawerau and Rotorua, and explored the middle line between ornamental, motif-based, non-Western art and the individualism and expressionistic tendency of western art. Seven Rivers (1995) heralded the beginning of Hight's interest in bee hives and consisted of abstract representations of hives using materials as diverse as wax strips, resin, raw canvas and oil paints. Since the late 1990s, he has also painted several predominantly realist series of hives set in dramatic New Zealand landscapes. His Auckland exhibition, Omarama/Place of Light ( 2002) sold out prior to the opening. Hight's Reliquary (2011) focussed on a variety of neglected objects that quietly occupy New Zealand's rural landscape. As with the beehives, Hight draws our attention to man made structures which are slowly being reclaimed by the landscape. Celebrating the beauty of the overlooked and the discarded, the weathered surfaces are all exquisitely rendered in Hight's acclaimed photorealist style.