Max Gimblett is a painter, calligrapher, and Rinzai Zen monk. Gimblett’s paintings are a harmonious postmodern synthesis of American and Japanese art. Often working on shaped panels or canvases – tondos, ovals, and his signature four-lobed quatrefoil – he marries Abstract Expressionism, Modernism and Spiritual Abstraction with mysticism and traditions of Asian calligraphy. Masterful brushwork, an eccentric and sophisticated color sense and sensuously glossy surfaces are punctuated with gilding in precious metals – a nod to alchemy, the Presbyterian Church of Scotland (in which he was raised) and Japanese lacquerware, ceramics and temple art.


Born in Auckland, New Zealand in 1935, he studied at the San Francisco Art Institute in the 1960s and has since traveled, taught and exhibited extensively across the globe. Gimblett’s work is included in major museum collections worldwide, including the Guggenheim Museum, the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, the National Gallery of Art (Washington, DC), the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa, and the Auckland Art Gallery Toi O Tamaki.

Studio views