Alexis Hunter was born in 1948 in New Zealand. She obtained an honours degree in painting and History of Art and Architecture at the Elam School of Fine Art in 1969. After travelling around Australia for a year she joined the Women's Workshop of the Artists Union in London whilst working in commercial film and animation. During the eighties she became Visiting Lecturer at the School of Visual Arts, New York and Byam Shaw in London, then Assistant Professor of Art at the University of Houston, Texas. Hunter has curated various exhibitions on painting and politics. Using London as her base, she then worked and showed internationally, including regular exhibitions at the Whitespace Gallery, New Zealand.

Alexis Hunter used photography in a distinctly powerful way, as a tool to take control of her own sexuality and buck the expected norms of society and gender stereotypes.

Through the use of series and narrative sequences she exposed the tyranny of fashion (Burning Shoe, 1977), domestic violence (Domestic Warfare, 1975), and the exploitation of women (The Model's Revenge, 1974). Her inclusion in WACK!, the 2007 exhibition at LA MoCA, cemented her reputation as a leading feminist artist. She also had a major Survey show at Auckland Art Gallery in 1989 and a solo show at Norwich Gallery in 2006. She continued to identify and made art relevant to the problems faced by the current generation of women, specifically as related to consumerism and male/female relationships.

Hunter was an important figure in the feminist art movement in Britain and her international importance is evidenced through her inclusion in international exhibitions and her place in the permanent collections of Tate Britain, the Arts Council of Great Britain, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Verbund Collection Vienna, the Imperial War Museum and many others museums worldwide.

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