Artist Profile- Peter Marsack


Peter Marsack originally trained as a zoologist, and after moving to Western Australia in 1980 he worked for the Department of Agriculture researching a range of species from fruitflies to dingoes and feral pigs.

In 1990 he resigned to follow his interests in wildlife art and illustration. He completed a Graduate Diploma in Plant and Wildlife Illustration at Newcastle University, where he was awarded the National Parks and Wildlife Margaret Senior Scholarship in 1991. Since 1992 he has worked as a freelance artist, and is based in Canberra.

Prizes, Publications etc:

In 2003 and 2004, Peter was a finalist in the Waterhouse Natural History Art Prize. His painting Glossy Black-Cockatoos won third Prize in the Watercolour category in 2003. He is one of 30 contemporary wildlife artists featured in "Feather and Brush" (Penny Olsen, CSIRO Publishing, 2001), a history of bird art and artists in Australia. His work has received awards from the Australian Entomological Society and from Birds Australia (Royal Australasian Ornithologists Union).

He illustrated "Fairy-wrens and Grasswrens" (Ian Rowley and Eleanor Russell, Oxford University Press 1997) and has painted over 70 plates for three volumes of the Handbook of Australian, New Zealand and Antarctic Birds (HANZAB: Birds Australia and Oxford University Press). He has produced a wide range of other work for publication, including calendars, posters, brochures, logos and signage. In recent years he collaborated with the prize-winning local naturalist Ian Fraser to produce an illustrated natural history diary of a year in the ACT, published by CSIRO in 2011 as A Bush Capital Year.


Peter's artwork has been included in a variety of exhibitions, including annual shows of the Wildlife Art Society of Australia, the Wildlife and Botanical Artists Group, ACT, and Australian National Capital Artists. His artwork was used to promote the major fund-raising exhibition "Art for Birds' Sake" in Sydney in 2001. He has painted birds more than any other subjects, mainly working in watercolour and gouache to produce illustrations for identification. This work demands detail and scientific accuracy but does leave room to show the character of the living bird.

His artwork for the HANZAB volumes is now held in the State Library of Victoria. He also enjoys looser styles of painting and other media and enjoys showing the animal as part of its environment, something he has been able to do in many private commissions and lately in abook project, A Bush Capital Year (CSIRO Publishing 2011). The pictures shown here reflect some of the range of his work.


Peter Marsack
7 Dakin Place
Hackett ACT 2602
Phone (02) 6257 0635