Neon Crochet Takes Out $15,000 Sculpture Award
The RT Nelson Awards for Sculpture Premier prize of $15,000 was won by Lissy and Rudi Robinson-Colefor their artworks Harikoa – Aroā Nukunuku and Paki – He Taonga Tuku Iho, hand carvings embellished with crocheted neon NZ wool.
Lissy and Rudi’s vision is to ignite joy globally and this is evident in the bold use of the contemporary neon colours they use. Their mahi toi (artworks) burst with positivity, joy and hope.
‘Our art is about navigating through the realities of today and striving to be our authentic selves,’ they say. ‘Look toward the horizon and future with positivity and aroha in the forefront of our hearts and minds.’
The winning artwork was selected by Lynne Sandri, artist, awards judge, curator and artist mentor from Wellington.
‘Lissy and Rudi are clever, bold, and colourful collaborators combining two traditional practices of carving and crochet into contemporary sculpture,’ says Sandri. ‘Even the range of neon colours are theirs and each colour represents a kaitiaki of their arts practice. Their works are beacons of joy and I believe will help share and connect our culture with everyone in whare (homes) and whare hui (meeting houses). These works are traffic stoppers and I can’t stop thinking about how uplifting they are. Definitely joy spreaders and I can’t think of anything more important that we all need right now.’
As collaborators, their works embrace the male and female energies as they combine their experience and skills to represent possibilities when those energies inhabit the same space.
Carla Russell, Executive Director of the Awards, is delighted with the results. ‘Lissy and Rudi’s pieces are stunning and I can see why they won the Premier Award, ‘say Russell. ‘Their bright boldness pops and zings and the Māori design is a loving salute to Māori culture.’
‘But I’m also impressed with the standard of all the finalist sculptures, they’re quite awe-inspiring. These awards are something that artists who work on small-scale pieces so richly deserve.’
Five Highly Commended prizes of $1,000 were awarded to:
- ‘The Clusterfuck That Was’, blown, hot sculpted and cast glass by George Agius (Manawatu)
- King Midas, Renunciation on the Pactolus Riverbank’, resin, bronze & gold by Christophe Jannin (Auckland)
- ‘The Tohunga and the Atua’, driftwood, coal, muka, paint & shells by Neke Moa (Otaki)
- ’Habitat 2′, steel, coloured acrylic & LED lights by Jane Downes (Little River, Canterbury)
- Submerge – Purple Fall, and Submerge – Ice melt, cast glass & stainless steel, by Di Tocker (Cambridge)
See images of Highly Commended winners below.
87 artworks from 65 finalists are exhibiting, all for sale, in a stunning display within the NZ Art Show at the TSB Arena Friday 3rd and Saturday 4th. A diverse range of media and themes are represented.
Images of all the finalists can be seen here.
The NZ Art Show opened with a bustling Gala Evening last night, hosting 1000 attendees, and the show is taking place this Queen’s Birthday weekend, opening Friday 3rd June to Sunday 6th, daily from 10am. The sculpture awards exhibition is not open on Sunday 6th.
Thousands of artworks are exhibiting in the NZ Art Show and you can meet many of the artists who will be onsite for the duration of the show. The NZ Art Show is the perfect opportunity for art lovers to start or add to their art collection.
Tickets are available on the door: $15 (adults), $10 (concession), and free entry for children under 12yrs. Be prepared to be impressed!
More information about the NZ Art Show can be found on the show’s website here: https://www.artshow.co.nz/