A cubist rendition of boats in Dunedin’s Deborah Bay was Supreme Winner at the Craigs Investment Partners’ Aspiring Art Prize, crowning another successful fundraising evening for Holy Family Catholic School.
‘Boat Study (View from Deborah Bay)’ by Dunedin artist Philip Maxwell was awarded the $10,000 main prize at the opening night at the school, in front of a 300-strong crowd. The event is now into its 15th year and success secures its future in Wānaka.
124 well-known artists from around New Zealand submitted their works, seeking one of the biggest cash prizes ($16,500 in total) in the country. It raises about $22,000 each year for the school. The People’s Choice award went to Mark Cowden for ‘Diamond in Yellow’ following the exhibition.
The Runner-up award of $2,000 went to Wānaka artist Sophie Melville for her watercolour ‘Winter Shadows over the Lindis Pass’. Best Landscape, with a $2,000 prize, went to Sarah Adam for her oil painting ‘Sundown Evening Gown’. The Best Work Under $1,000 went to Ruth Mitchener for her oil painting ‘Ngā Manu Sanctuary’.
A new category, The Round Corner, showcasing paintings on a 40cm diameter round priced under $1000, was won by Sandy Rodgers for her mixed media painting ‘Loved to Death’.
31 of the works were sold on Friday night, valued at $43,000, with 16 more selling in the days after.
Judges for this year’s Aspiring Art Prize were Robyn Notman, Head Curator of Pictures at the Hocken Collections, and Professor Federico Freschi, Head of College of the College of Art, Design & Architecture at the Otago Polytechnic. They were impressed by the range and variety of works.
A portion of the funds will be set aside to create an Aspiring Art Foundation, to enable opportunities for budding young visual artists at the school to receive extra opportunities.
The event is organised by Holy Family’s Friends of the School (FOTS). Chair Sarah Jamieson said the sell-out opening night gala event and interest showed how far the Art Prize had come in 14 years.
“Every year we are blown away by the support that we get,” Jamieson said.
Read edition 1009 of the Wānaka Sun here.