Bill Manhire was born in Invercargill. For many years he taught at Victoria University, where he founded the International Institute of Modern Letters, which is home to New Zealand’s leading creative writing program.
Bill is best known as a poet and in 2007 he received the Prime Minister’s Award for poetry. In 1997 he was made New Zealand’s inaugural Poet Laureate, and in 2005 he was appointed a Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit and named an Arts Foundation of New Zealand Laureate. He holds an honorary Doctorate of Literature from the University of Otago and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of New Zealand.
Bill is especially well known for his collaborative work: in particular with the artist Ralph Hotere; with the physicist Sir Paul Callaghan; and with the composer Norman Meehan.
Photo credit Ed Swindon