Artists Sell Out as Eager Art Collectors Snap Up $1.2 Million of Art at NZ Art Show
Eager art collectors snapped up nearly 1,700 artworks at the 2018 NZ Art Show, chalking up more $1.2 million in sales. More than 10,000 people attended the show held in Wellington over Queen’s Birthday weekend.
In a first for the show, many artists sold out of their artwork.
Carla Russell, Executive Director of the NZ Art Show is astounded by the results.
‘This year marks fifteen years of the NZ Art Show, and this is the best way to celebrate’, says Russell. ‘I’m so proud of how the artists performed: they all presented outstanding talent which was well rewarded by healthy art sales.’
Among the artists who sold out included Wellington artists Juliet Best and Glen Jorna, and Auckland artist Anna Filiminova.
Art teacher Glen Jorna sold 23 pieces. His abstract artwork is inspired by the torn remnants of urban advertising poster walls. This was his first time exhibiting as an on-site artist and he came into the show not knowing how his works would be received by the public.
‘As I was setting up my wall, I was questioning the quality of my art,’ says Jorna, ‘but the positive reaction to my work was completely overwhelming. Most were intrigued by my method and process of collecting torn posters from the streets and incorporating them in many layers in my work. I feel truly validated as an artist.’
Ukranian-born Anna Filimonova is a surrealist painter and a first-time exhibitor with the show – she was stunned that she sold all her artworks. When her last artwork was removed from her wall she received a rousing applause from neighbouring artists and attendees.
‘This was my first chance to get my artwork in front of thousands of people and see if they understood what I was doing’, says Filimonova. ‘From all the feedback I received, I now know that I am on the right track.’
In addition to the high sales, there were a number of other artists who won big at the show with the show’s awards.
Four art school graduates won the RT Nelson Emerging Artist Awards of $2,500 each – the NZ Art Show congratulates Bonco, Niki Simpkin-Hill and Amy Donnell from Elam School of Fine Art, and Michael Mahne Lamb from Massey University College of Creative arts on their awards
Wellington artists Dean Proudfoot and Rika Nagahata received the Signature Promotions Art Award, $1,000 and $500 respectively. The Signature Promotions Art Award is open to all on-site artists and the competition is tough.
‘I am delighted to see so many artists coming out on top this year,’ says Russell. ‘The show is a true testament to the creative spirit of all Kiwis. I can’t wait for the 2019 show.’