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Robert Foster

Robert Foster
Artist's statement

The strong driving force behind my creative practice is to explore and invent. I transcribe over this fascination with visual language and the understanding of material and process. The results of my investigation are both diverse in form and function as well as appearance. In spite of this multiplicity people say that there is a commonality in my work, perhaps this is tied to my interest in expressing energy, implied movement, interacting forms and line, which are generally impressions of the environment around me. The diversity of my exploration has given me a growing bank of knowledge, creating a "feed back loop" between aesthetics, process and ideas.

Like Robert's work? You can buy a gift card!

Recent work
The Journey
  • The Journey, 2010
  • 37 Ossalites (permanent lighting installation) ACTEWAgl House, Canberra Australia
  • Dimensions: Dimensions variable
  • Photo: DMC Photographic
Mortality Reflected
  • Mortality Reflected, 2011
  • Steel Frame, Acrylic top cast polyurethane, fibre optics, 12 volt quartz halogen globes, tinted glass gel
  • Dimensions: 470 (l) x 65 (w) x 210cm(h)
  • Photo: Robert Foster
  • Cornucopia, 2013
  • Fine silver
  • Dimensions: 25 x 25cm
  • Photo: Robert Foster
Emerald Streak
  • Emerald Streak, 2005
  • Raised polished stainless steel with anodized aluminium spout and handle
  • Dimensions: 210 x 200 x 270mm
  • Photo: Robert Foster

FINK Titanium Pitcher
  • FINK Titanium Pitcher, 2015
  • Hydro formed anodized titanium
  • Dimensions: 30 x 80cm
  • Photo: Stephanie Mangos
Soft Pink
  • Soft Pink, 2015
  • Anodised aluminium, Collaboration with Marie Hagerty
  • Dimensions: 15 x 6 x 40cm
  • Photo: Damien McDonald

Like Robert's work? You can buy a gift card!


Robert Foster initially trained as a silversmith at the Australian National University School of Art, and enjoys a reputation as a skilled hollow ware maker and designer. He was recently awarded the inaugural ANU Alumnus of the Year for Innovation & Entrepreneurship 2015.

He established F!NK & Co. in 1993 after the success of his iconic F!NK Water Jug. F!NK production is based on colourful, durable, anodised aluminium, and has reintroduced the material into high-end homewares, lighting and accessories. Foster also works in sculptural lighting, furniture and commissions, and brings to his work the combination of the natural inquisition of an engineer with the creativity of an artist. Primarily working with aluminium, titanium and stainless steel, he combines such untraditional alloys with other materials as diverse as plastics, stone, ceramics and glass.

Foster regularly exhibits his one off work both in Australia and abroad and his works, and those of F!NK & Co., are held in major public collections such as the NGA, the Powerhouse Museum, and the V&A Museum, London, UK, the MoMA New York and Museum Fur Kunst und Gewerbe, Hamburg.

In a career spanning 29 years, Foster has been regularly commissioned to design sculptural installations, corporate gifts and exclusive products. His lighting installation The Journey (2010) received the 2011 ACT Architecture Award for Lighting and the Australian New Zealand Lighting Design IES Award of Excellence.

Robert regularly collaborates with other Artists and Designers, having worked together with over 10 practitioners on F!NK products. More recently Robert has collaborated with artist Marie Hagerty, producing two bodies of works. Robert has also collaborated with Oron Catts of Symbiotica (UniWA) and they are continuing to working collaboratively towards an exhibition that opens in October 2015 at the University of Western Australia as part of a conference based around Bio-Arts.

Selected exhibitions
2015:   Marie Haggerty & Robert Foster, Karen Woodbury Gallery - Melbourne
2014:   Collaborative work with Marie Hagerty, Olsen Irwin Gallery - Sydney
2014:   Sharing Light, Canberra Design Festival - Canberra
2014:   Glass X Design, Canberra Glassworks - Canberra
2014:   Embracing Innovation 4, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre - Canberra
2014:   SFA Artists, Kaori Gallery - Canberra
2013:   Contemporary Australian Silver & Metalwork Award 2013, Bendigo Art Gallery and Arts Centre Melbourne,
2013:   Bodywork: Australian Jewellery 1972-2012, NGA touring exhibition,
2013:   Inhabit: living design, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre - Canberra
2013:   Breathe In, COTA - Sydney
2012:   Signature, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre - Canberra
2012:   TEFAF, Adrian Sassoon Gallery - London,
2012:   Survey of contemporary jewellery design, glass and metal smithing in Australia, Incinerator Gallery - Melbourne, Sydney,
2012:   Designed 2, ANU School of Art - Canberra
2011:   Strange Planet (solo) , Gallery of Australian Design - Canberra
2011:   COLLECT, Scottish Gallery, Saatchi Gallery - London,
2011:   Elements: metal, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre - Canberra
2010:   Tea Wares, JamFactory - Adelaide
2010:   Fostering Design,17 year retrospective exhibition of FINK & Co, Wagga Wagga Art Gallery touring,
2009:   Robert Foster 15 years and more, Metalab - Sydney
Selected commissions/awards/grants
2015:   Akiba Restaurant
2014:   ACT Rowing (TT Architects)
2013:   Nishi Building (Molonglo Group)
2013:   Radford College (BHP Billiton)
2012:   Swimming Australia
2012:   Art Gallery of WA Shop
2012:   Nishi Building (Molonglo Group), Lift Interiors
2011:   Sofitel, Macau Hong Kong
2010:   Hilton Maldives
2010:   Actew AGL
2010:   Qantas
2009:   British High Commission Canberra
2008:   Courtesy of the Artist Shop/ Gallery
2008:   Swimming Australia
2007:   The Capital Hotel (DOMA), The DOMA group
2006:   Melbourne Convention Centre, Mirvac, Sampford & Staff
2005:   Winner ACT Small to Medium Manufacturer Exporter
2000:   Chief Minister's Creative Arts Fellowship, Canberra
Selected publications
2011:   Pro. D. Williams AM, Elements: metal, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre
2010:   Gates, M., F!NK at Dodeka, Seoul, Republic of Korea, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre
2008:   B. McConchie, F!NK Fostering Design, Craft ACT: Craft and Design Centre
2002:   Request, Response, Reaction: The designers of Australia and New Zealand, Image Publishing
2000:   Maurer, I., King,L., International Design Year Book,


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