Shane Cotton (born 1964) is a major NZ painter. Born in Wellington’s Upper Hutt with Ngapuhi affiliations, Cotton studied at Ilam School of Fine Arts in Christchurch, graduating in 1988. He then went on to become a lecturer at Massey University in Palmerston North.
Cotton’s work evocatively includes both Maori iconography and culture, (such as shrunken heads, mokomokai, and native birds as tui), and European symbols and items. Many of his paintings go into depth of primitive ideas especially through Maori whakapapa. His paintings have explored questions of colonisation, cultural identity, Maori spirituality, and death.
Shane Cotton was the recipient of the Frances Hodgkins Fellowship, and his work is highly has become highly sought after this. He has received the Seppelt Art Award from Sydney University, and has been exhibited at many leading galleries both in Australia and New Zealand, as well as galleries in Spain and Prague.