Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award winners announced


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3 December 2007

Winners of the Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award 2007 were announced this evening, Friday, 30 November at ArtsPost.

The Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award is a national competition where entrants create a sculptural art piece out of No.8 wire. The award has a total prize pool of $10,000 which is sponsored by New Zealand National Agricultural Fieldays.

This year's winner, Hamiltonian Elsa Lye whose entry was entitled The Origin of the Species, won a prize of $7000 cash.

Second place and $2000 went to Ann Byford for her entry entitled Whitu Pohutukawa while David Pronger won third prize and $1000 for his entry called The Limits to Growth.

In announcing the winner, judge Philip Clarke said that he was particularly interested in works that addressed in some way both the ubiquity of No.8 wire in our landscape together with the formal qualities of the wire."

"Winner Elsa Lye used the qualities of hardness and malleability to create a work that suggests something of primeval life and that moment when somehow the inanimate is transformed to the animate."

Waikato Museum director Kate Vusoniwailala says the Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award celebrates Kiwi ingenuity.

"The Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award always adds a unique dimension to Waikato Museum's and ArtsPost's exhibitions of local and national art. Both of these facilities are committed to providing local and national artists with a platform from which to showcase their work. As always, the Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award turned out diverse and innovative entries this year. We'd encourage anyone seeking a unique artistic experience to visit ArtsPost and take in this year's Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award entries."

Philip Clarke says No.8 wire is not only an institutional part of New Zealand's development but also a versatile material for artistic expression.

"I think the time has come when No.8 wire can be thought about and used, especially in the context of this generous art award, as an expressive medium. No. 8 wire has historically been one of the key elements in how many of us have engaged with our environment. We have divided, opened, closed, owned and organised landscape, animals and people with No.8 wire.

"As we continue to rely on No.8 wire for our habitation and management of our environment, there is still much to creatively explore in these terrains for a wide range of artists. I hope that artists in future years take the opportunity as these artists have done in 2007."

Mr Clarke is the inaugural director of Objectspace, an Auckland public gallery that opened in 2004 and is dedicated to contemporary craft and design. He has worked in the cultural sector for over 20 years and has strong interests across the visual arts.


NAME: Kate Vusoniwailala
DESIGNATION: Waikato Museum Director
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NAME: Naomi Reynolds
DESIGNATION: Communication Executive
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FAX (DIRECT): 0 7 838 6761
Page reviewed: 03 Dec 2007 12:00am