The Artist Trebor
(aka Rob Stephenson)
Life is an ongoing exploration of ’things’. After 50+ years of discovery and creation, I am now at THAT junction, on THAT road where design crosses paths with abstract expression, visual communication and surrealism. Out of the resulting chaos springs my art. Being multidisciplinary allows me the freedom to meander through myriad mediums. Scrutinising them, analysing them, learning about them and then applying them, to bring together things that have not been seen together before. Rob is a truly creative thinker. Rob was born and bred in a small rural community called Ohariu Valley, 15 minutes out of Wellington, New Zealand’s capital city. As a boy, Rob would draw on anything and everything, much to his parent’s dismay. Walls. Doors. Windows… anything. Even paper sometimes. Giving in to his artistic endeavours and avoiding more cleaning bills, they allowed him to paint murals on his bedroom walls. His father introduced Rob to black-and-white photography in his early teens. They used the home laundry, converted into a makeshift darkroom, to produce many original and interesting images. Rob would sit and draw and paint at every opportunity. His love of art carried on through primary and secondary school, where he took a lead role in painting murals on school buildings. During those years Rob’s art teacher saw huge potential in his creative thinking and encouraged him to pursue a ‘Commercial Artists’ course. He studied for 3 years full-time, plus night school, at Wellington Polytechnic, graduating in 1984. While under the enormous pressure of deadlines from the Visual Communications Design & Photography Course, Rob still found time to paint and draw, even selling some works. After graduating he landed a junior art director position in an international ad agency. This career path saw Rob working as a Senior Art Director and Associate Creative Director in numerous multinational ad agencies in Wellington, Sydney and Brisbane, creating many award-winning campaigns. As an Art Director Rob has been very privileged to have worked with some of the best photographers and illustrators in Australia and New Zealand, gleaning much from this multiplicity of talent, resulting in a large body of fine art and photographic works. Rob currently runs his own Design Consultancy, The AD Man – Rob Stephenson, which has been successfully creating graphics and marketing materials for the past 20+ years. More recently Rob has turned his mind back to the ‘Art World’ and has decided it is high time he showcased more of his work. Photography, sculpture and mixed media are the focus at this stage. Rob draws inspiration from everywhere and constantly creates interesting, witty, thought-provoking art, photography and sculptures. Kicking off this new adventure, Rob has already exhibited at the internationally acclaimed Swell SculptureFestival 2021, 2022 and upcoming 2023, Swell Smalls Gallery, Sculptures On The Edge 2021 and 2022, Sculpture In The Vines – Sirromet Winery 2021 and 2022 (The large Heart purchased by Sirromet Wines) and many other Sculptors Queensland exhibitions, selling a few pieces already. Not a bad start hey?!