I have lived and worked in five different countries of the world, earning my living in a variety of ways. This experience has opened my eyes to the beauty of our planet and to the infinite variety of life forms, both human and non-human, that it sustains. But I have also come to appreciate the fragility of life on earth and how tenuous our hold ultimately is. This awareness informs my work.

I was born in Johannesburg, South Africa in 1938 but left in 1959 as soon as I had completed a degree in social anthropology. I taught school in London then went to Manchester where I did a year’s post-graduate study before returning to South Africa to work as an Education Officer in industry. That served to confirm that my future lay outside South Africa. In Israel I lived and worked on a kibbutz and then, like many others from around the world, volunteered to take part in the excavation of Masada, King Herod’s remote palace fortress on the shores of the Dead Sea, the site where subsequently 960 Jewish Zealots, men women and children, committed mass suicide rather than fall into the hands of the besieging Roman army. I was appointed to the expedition’s staff as a field supervisor and as head of the volunteers who came from 28 countries in fortnightly shifts.

After marriage, my first wife and I lived in upstate New York where I was employed as a Training Officer in the manufacturing division of a large corporation. We returned to Israel after I had been appointed the first curator of Masada, helping to transform the site into what became Israel’s premier national park.

We then decided to make the UK our permanent home. Our three sons were born in London where I worked as a book editor for a publishing house specializing in art, history and archaeology. Next I was recruited to help set up the London Housing Consortium where I worked for several years before joining the civil service in Whitehall. For twenty years I served in a senior capacity in the Department of the Environment and a variety of other government departments. In 1994 I was appointed to the global headquarters of the United Nations Environment Programme in Nairobi, Kenya, where, with my second wife, I remained until retirement in 2000. Since then I have been living in Falmouth in Cornwall. With its majestic coastline and rugged interior, it provides endless inspiration to those fortunate enough to live here. It is here that I shared ten happy years with my late wife and collaborator, the environmental painter Kate Fagin.

photo:Ingrid Andrea Reigstad
website design: xgraphica