Tsunami inspired video wins premier art award
Wallace Art Awards
Until November 11.
Then Pataka Museum
December 12 – February 24
Wallace Art Gallery
March 13 – May 5
A video work which was inspired by the tsunami which hit Samoa in 2009 has won New Zealand’s premier art award. Don McKinnon, Chairperson: of Regional Facilities Auckland last night announced the awards at the 21st Wallace Art Awards ceremony to a packed Pah Homestead crowd.
Shigeyuki Kihara received the Paramount Award which provides a six month residency in New York as well as a trophy designed by Terry Stringer.
Katie Theunissen received the Development Award which provides a two-month residency at the Vermont Studio Centre in Vermont, John Brown was awarded the Kaipara Foundation Wallace Arts Trust which provides a three-month residency at the Altes Spital studios in Switzerland Award while the Fulbright-Wallace Arts Trust Award went to Steve Carr.
The First Runner Up was Karin Hofko and the Second Runner Up was Tessa Laird. Each of them received $2000. A Jury Award was made to Erica van Zon.
The awards are the oldest of their kind in New Zealand awarding four overseas residencies and various prizes amounting to over $165,000. James Wallace announced last night that next years prize value would be close to $200,000.
Shigeyuki Kihara is a Samoan contemporary artist and the first New Zealander to hold a solo exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York. She currently also has work exhibited in the exhibition Home AKL at the Auckland Art Gallery.
Her winning work, Galu Afi: Waves of Fire consists of the artist dressed in a mourning cloak moving her hands in traditional dance movements. Multiple, overlaid images of the hand movement give the impression of volcanic activity, explosions and surging water. The fluttering hands also suggest the movement of birds or ther passage of souls.
The mesmeric work is the first video work to be awarded a prize in the awards which also has video work by Steve Carr and Karin Hofko. Carr’s work features a car doing spectacular wheelies and burn outs on a country road.
With over seventy works in the exhibition and the Salon des Refuses the exhibition is one of the most important in providing a cross section of contemporary art in New Zealand.
While most of the artists are well known senior practitioners and emerging artist there are also a number of artists who appear to be exhibiting for the first time.
This is what makes the Wallace award so interesting. Out of over five hundred applicants from around New Zealand we get to see the best and most interesting aspects of new art.
Other artists exhibiting include Alexander Bartleet, Katie Breckon, Noel Ivanoff, Peata Larkin, Chris Mules, Justin Spears, Heather Straka and Aurelia Zatta.
The 2012 Awards were judged by three prominent Art Practitioners – Warwick Brown, Derrick Cherrie and Sam Mitchell. This year’s Fulbright-Wallace Arts Trust Award judging panel was comprised of Scott Optican, Carole Shepheard, Peter Robinson and Warwick Brown.