Albert Wendt

Esteemed writer, of the āiga Sa-Tuaopepe of Lefaga and the āiga Sa-Patu of Vaiala, Sāmoa.


Poet, novelist, short-story writer, playwright and painter, Albert Wendt CNZM is emeritus professor of English at the University of Auckland, specialising in New Zealand and Pacific literatures and creative writing.

Wendt has been an influential figure in the developments that have shaped New Zealand and Pacific literature since the 1970s and was made Companion of the New Zealand Order of Merit in 2001 for his services to literature.

His verse novel The Adventures of Vela was published in 2008 and won the Commonwealth Writer's Prize for the Asia Pacific Region; his co-edited anthology Whetu Moana: Contemporary Polynesian Poems in English won a Montana New Zealand Book Award; and his subsequent anthology Mauri Ola: Contemporary Polynesian Poems in English was shortlisted for the 2011 New Zealand Post Book Awards. In November 2012, he won the $60,000 Prime Minister's Award for Literary Achievement (Fiction).