Celebrating sculpture from Aotearoa

Carve. Mold. Melt. Cast. Shape. Assemble
Wood. Stone. Metal. Bronze, Clay. Glass. Textile. Mixed media

The NZ Art Show is proud to host the 2022 RT Nelson Awards for Sculpture – Aotearoa’s premier award for small-scale sculpture.

Visitors to the show will see 90 outstanding artworks by 68 world-class Kiwi artisans selected as finalists for the awards: they will all be revealed at the 2022 NZ Art Show, Queen’s Birthday Weekend, June 2-4 June, in Wellington in a spectacular display unrivalled by any other exhibition of its kind.

The winners will also be announced at the show on June 2, at a private function.

All artworks will be for sale, so this is a perfect opportunity to invest in New Zealand sculpture.

‘Be prepared to be wowed and challenged by the diversity of these contemporary artworks. It’s an exciting time for New Zealand sculpture’

Carla Russell, Executive Director, NZ Art Show

‘Deep 2’ by Cambridge artist Di Tocker
Lissy and Rudi Robinson-Cole, Auckland.z

The RT Nelson Awards for Sculpture is a unique opportunity for NZ sculptors to be recognised and rewarded for their talent and craftsmanship.

There’s a total of $20,000 available with a premier prize of $15,000 with five highly commended prizes of $1000 each

The awards seek to foster, educate, and nurture a market for small scale sculpture so they can be enjoyed in one’s home. They highlight the diversity of small-scale works and celebrate our unique culture and heritage through New Zealand sculpture.

The sculptures will be on exhibition and all for sale at the NZ Art Show in Wellington raising awareness of this important art form.

Spinafex sculpture by Otaki artist Birgit Moffatt

The best way to appreciate these sculptures and to celebrate the artists who created them is to see them for yourselves at the NZ Art Show.

Please note: the artworks on this page do not represent any artworks selected as finalists, they are examples of artworks by some of the artists.

‘Full Disclosure’ by Manawatu artist George Agius


Richard T. Nelson is an avid art collector and appreciator. Originally from the USA, Richard has called Wellington, NZ home for past 25 years.

Richard’s love of sculpture started more than 50 years ago upon visiting a small gallery in Haiti. There he came across some beautiful works by a Haitian sculptor, Ludovic Booz. He purchased 3 elegant mahogany sculptures that he admires and appreciates to this day.

His collection holds contemporary pieces from around the world including Europe, the United States, New Zealand, Australia, Haiti, Japan and Africa. His sculpture collection includes a considerable selection of smaller works, providing the inspiration for this award.

Richard T Nelson appreciates the elegance and grace of sculpture, and wishes to reward technique and true craftsmanship through this award.

Otaki artist Birgit Moffatt in the studio
‘Toroa’ by Nelson artist Andy Waugh
Auckland artist Julie Moselen in the workshop

The NZ Art Show wishes to thank the following for their support: