White, Pat

White, Pat

Information

residence
Canterbury

In Brief

Pat White is a poet, essayist, memoirist and artist. His writing often directly reflects his interest in rural life and the natural environment. His first collection of poetry, Signposts, was published in 1977, and he has since published a range of collections that draw on his experience living in different places around New Zealand, from the bottom of the South Island to the far north of New Zealand. Pat White was the 2010 Writer in Residence at the historic Randell Cottage in Wellington. He takes part in the Book Council's Writers in Schools programme and can lead Professional Development sessions for teachers..

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

White, Pat (1944 - ) is a poet, essayist, memoirist and artist. His poetry often reflects an interest in rural life and the natural environment, with a life lived 'close to the seasons.'

Born in Tapanui, White has lived around New Zealand from the deep south to the far north.

His early collections of poetry include, Signposts (1977); Bushfall (1978); Cut Across the Grain (1980); Acts of Resistance (1985); Dark Backward (1994); and Drought and Other Intimacies (1999).

White's exhibition catalogue, Roy Ashton Steer: seizing the moment, was published to coincide with the opening of Aratoi: Wairarapa Arts & History Museum in 2001.

His collection, Planting the Olives, was launched in Masterton by New Zealand Poetry Society Patron Dame Fiona Kidman on Montana Poetry Day 2004.

The exhibition catalogue, Gallipoli; in search of a family story, by Pat White, was launched to coincide with the opening of the successful travelling exhibition, shown at the National Army Museum (Waiouru), among other venues. It features colour illustrations, diary excerpts and letters home written by White's great-uncle and ANZAC, Jack Dunn. Dunn was the only New Zealander serving at Gallipoli in 1915 to be sentenced to death by court martial.

White graduated with an MA in Creative Writing from the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University in 2010. He also has an MFA from Massey University, Wellington, and both degrees enable him to explore ‘a sense of place’ – one through writing, the other through painting and sculpture.

Pat White was the 2010 Writer in Residence at the historic Randell Cottage in Wellington, and in the same year his collection of memoir essays, How the Land Lies: of longing and belonging, was published by VUP. Jeffrey Paparoa Holman writes, reviewing How the Land Lies: of longing and belonging in the NZ Listener: 'Painter, poet, genealogist, biographer, and now memoirist: White is a jack-of-all-trades and masters many. He pays his debts to Hooper, Gary Snyder and a host of others, in the process becoming our own accessible, contemporary Henry David Thoreau.'

WRITERS IN SCHOOLS INFORMATION

Pat White is available for school visits as part of the Book Council's Writers in Schools programme.

MEDIA LINKS AND CLIPS

  • Book profile of Pat White's How the Land Lies on VUP's website

Updated January 2017.