Macquarie Private Wealth invests in New Zealand artists

Jane Campion

Macquarie Private Wealth New Zealand Arts Awards
The Arts Foundation
Shed 10, Auckland
October 15

Earlier this week at the Macquarie Private Wealth New Zealand Arts Awards $400,000 was awarded to 14 artists and art organisations

The recipients represented a range of artistic disciplines, at different stages in their careers.

Five Arts Foundation Laureate Awards of $50,000 were presented at the ceremony. These are for artists who have reached high standards of excellence and have an outstanding potential for future growth. The awards recognise a moment in the artists' career that will allow them to move to their next great success.

Past Arts Foundation laureates include Chris Knox, John Reynolds, Lloyd Jones, Michael Parekowhai, Ngila Dickson and Oscar Kightley.

This year’s laureates are author Damien Wilkins, screenwriter and playwright Dean Parker, director, producer and screenwriter Jane Campion., visual artist Laurence Aberhart and landscape architect Megan Wraight.

Three New Generation Awards of $25,000 were presented to artists who are considered  to have talent and assured potential  that sets them apart from their peers.

Past recipients include Taika Waititi, Warren Maxwell, Cameron McMillan, Pip Adam and Shigeyuki Kihara.

This year’s New Generation award recipients were: visual artist Kushana Bush, theatre practitione  Kip Champan and musician SJD (Sean James Donelley).

Photographer and Graphic Designer Jono Rotman was the recipient of the Marti Friedlander Photographic Award, and $25,000. This award is presented every two years to an established photographer with a record of excellence and potential to continue working at high levels..

Also being awarded was the biennial Mallinson Rendel Illustrator’s Award. which is awarded to a children's book illustrator with published work of a high standard and includes a cash gift of $10,000. 

This year’s recipient was Gavin Bishop, a children’s book author and illustrator of over 50 books, whose work has been exhibited in shows from Japan to Czechoslovakia with his books having been translated into nine languages.

The Arts Foundation Award for patronage, which acknowledges significant philanthropic contributions to the arts was awarded to the Todd Family. One of the many Todd Family trusts has donated $3 million  to the Len Lye Foundation, the largest contribution ever made to an arts organistion in the country,

The Todd family received $20,000 to distribute to artists or arts organisations of their choice.. As in previous years the Todd family has donated $20,000 of its own funds and split the $40,000 into four donations of $10,000.

It has chosen to award $10,000 each to tenor Tom Atkins, photographer Mark Adams, Dawn Sanders QSM of the Shakespeare Festival and Auckland Choral. 

In presenting the awards Sir John Todd said that the arts were at the heart of society and that the family supported the arts, not as some sort of heroic gesture but, because its members wanted to help out.

The Arts Foundation is a private philanthropic organisation started by patrons to wanting to support New Zealand's finest artists to create more work. Since its inception 12 years ago, the foundation has recognised 155 artists and donated over $4.5 million to the arts.
“The Macquarie Private Wealth New Zealand Arts Foundation Awards recognise New Zealand’s most talented artists, a community that continues to impress with the quality of its work and achievements, both here and around the globe. The goal of the Awards is to recognise outstanding work and to provide tangible funding to individuals at critical stages in their career,” said Arts Foundation chairwoman Fran Ricketts.
The event at Shed 10 included performances from the Modern Maori Quartet, Auckland Choral singing Handel’s Hallelujah Chorus , Don McGlashan with SJD and Simon O’Neil, who sang several arias.

Artists' biographies
Damien Wilkins is a writer of novels, short stories and poetry. His books have been published in New Zealand, the US and the UK and he has won and been nominated for a range of prizes and awards.  Damien is the director of the International Institute of Modern Letters at Victoria University, Wellington.

Dean Parker grew up in Napier.  In his 20s, he spent time in London where he began a long involvement in socialist and Irish republican movements. He has worked as a writer for much of his life and been prominent in his union, the NZ Writer's Guild. He has written for movies (Came A Hot Friday), stage (Midnight In Moscow), TV and radio.

Zealand director, producer and screenwriter Jane Campion is one of contemporary cinema’s most notable film-makers. She is the first and only female director to receive the coveted Palme d’Or at Cannes (1993) and also only the second of four women ever to be nominated as Best Director at the Academy Awards (1994), both for The Piano.

Laurence Aberhart is a committed visual artist of the highest order. He educates our emotions, showing us who we are and how we might see; how we see ourselves as citizens of New Zealand and beyond.  For close to 40 years he has produced an astounding body of work that is unrivalled in its intensity, richness and the layers of cultural and photographic history.  

Megan Wraight, the founding principal of Wraight + Associates Limited, Landscape Architects (WA), is an internationally acclaimed New Zealand landscape architect.  Megan has been the lead or co-lead landscape architect on a wide variety of large scale public and private space works including Waitangi Park, Taranaki Wharf, Centreport and Cobblestone Park in Wellington, Hood St in Hamilton, Waitomo Caves Visitors Centre, Christchurch Coastal Pathway, and Jellicoe Street, North Wharf and Silo Park in the Wynyard Quarter, Auckland.
Kip Chapman has established himself as one of the most innovative and successful theatre practitioners of his generation in New Zealand as both an actor and theatre maker.  He has performed in over 20 productions, has had success in the Chapman Tripp Theatre Awards and with a major work APOLLO 13: Mission Control which has been performed over 200 times to world-wine acclaim.

Kushana Bush is a young Dunedin-based artist whose works draws on "miniature” painting techniques borrowed from Persian traditions and Japanese prints. The works’ decorative elegance is contrasted with a witty focus on contemporary anxieties. She has won the Art and Australia Contemporary Art Award, and has been Artist in Residence at the National Art studio, Changdong, Seoul. She was the Frances Hodgkins Fellow at The University of Otago in 2011.

SJD (Sean James Donnelly), is an Auckland-based musician.  His music is a mix of electronica, pop-rock, and soul. The name SJD also refers to Donnelly's touring band when he is not performing solo. He is the recipient of a New Zealand Music Tui Best Producer Award and is a winner of the Taite Prize.

Jono Rotman was raised in a rural valley near Wellington, he studied print-making at the Universidad Nacional de Cuyo in Mendoza, Argentina and photography at Wellington Polytechnic. He has exhibited at the Centre for Contemporary Photography in Melbourne, the Adam Art Gallery in Wellington, Pataka Art Museum in Porirua and the McNamara Gallery in Whanganui. He is married to a neuroscientist and has a young daughter. He divides his time between New York and New Zealand. Rotman inherited a sense of the tenuousness of society and a capacity for foreboding from his father, who suffered under the Nazi occupation as a teenager in the Netherlands.  His mother, a fourth generation New Zealander, is a Darwinian biologist. She instilled a kinship with the natural world and a desire to collect specimens. She has named a starfish species for him, Plutonaster jonathani. These influences are woven into Rotman’s world view, informing both his artistic method and choice of subjects. Rotman mines edge states and points of transition. For example, his work explores the continuing cataclysm of colonization, and the collision of civilization and the natural world. Among his subjects in New Zealand are sites of incarceration and gangs. In America, he is exploring the decline of empire. His often large-scale works of subjects great and terrible are a controlled meditation on the sublime.

Gavin Bishop is a children's book author and illustrator of over 50 books. His distinctive ink and watercolour illustrations and his original text have won him numerous awards. His illustrations have been exhibited at international shows from Japan to Czechoslovakia. His books have been translated into nine languages and he has been guest speaker at many international forums.

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