01 September 2022

Sculptural Art Takes Centre Stage in Ōtautahi

Sculptural Art Takes Centre Stage in Ōtautahi

The Arts Centre Sculpture Festival is back for its third consecutive year, making it an annual fixture on the Ōtautahi arts calendar.

Between the 3–16 September, the home of arts and heritage Te Matatiki Toi Ora The Arts Centre, will be enlivened with around 40 emerging and well-known New Zealand artists showcasing over 200 works for sale. Works include ceramics, jewellery, glass, mixed media, and sculpture, with smaller pieces displayed in the Great Hall and larger pieces nestled amongst the Gothic Revival architecture of the North Quad.

During opening weekend, on the 3 and 4 September, there will be 12 free artist talks in the Great Hall. Along with artist demonstrations by ceramic artists Takaaki Sakaguchi and Tatyanna Meharry, and sculpture/mixed media artists Maria Lee, Ruth Killoran and Patrick Barry will be held in the North Quad and Common Room. There will also be a range of creative workshops such as ceramics with Emma Turner, stone carving with Nicholas Duval-Smith, and clay time for 6–8 year olds with Hannah Wilson-Black. Entry to the Sculpture Festival is free, and artist demonstrations and creative workshops cost between $10-$15 per person.

Arts Centre Creative Director Chris Archer and Festival Curator Koji Miyazaki, decided to call for applications from artists for this year’s festival to keep the festival fresh and in particular to support emerging artists. ‘We responded to previous feedback from artists by offering a call to interested artists as well as the usual process of offering invitation,’ said Koji. A panel was comprised of experienced local artists to select this year’s cohort.

Participating artists were given a lot of creative licence as there was no curatorial theme to respond to. Koji said, ‘this year the festival boasts a wider range of abstract and installation pieces, such as Anthony Genet’s neon glass works and Milvia Romici’s plastic objects inspired by Plastiglomerates, created when plastic debris melts and fuses with natural materials, reflecting on the themes of consumption, sustainability, and circular economy.’

Eighteen newcomers are exhibiting this year including Rebecca Stewart, Lisa West, Patrick Barry, Anthea Stayt, Justin Culina, Jenny Zhong, Lindsay Butler, Lukeke Design Collective, Justine Fletcher, Matt Akehurst, Ruth Killoran and many more. Along with the first-time exhibitors there are some familiar and well-known artists including ceramic artists Tatyanna Meharry, Fiona Tunnicliffe, Rick Rudd; sculpture/mixed media artists, Jane Downes, Nicholas Duval-Smith; jewellers Lynn Kelly, Ailish Roughan, and glass/neon artists Anthony Genet and Karin Barr.

Arts Centre Director Philip Aldridge said, ‘We have purposefully left the appeal of the Sculpture Festival broad – catering to seasoned art collectors and whose who are new to sculptural art by having a range of price points’. All sales from the Sculpture Festival will benefit both the artist and The Arts Centre.

The Arts Centre Sculpture Festival is supported by the Farina Thompson Charitable Trust, proudly managed by Perpetual Guardian.


Key Festival Details

Venue: Great Hall & North Quad, Te Matatiki Toi Ora The Arts Centre, 2 Worcester Boulevard, Christchurch.

Open daily: 3–16 September, 10am to 5pm. Free entry.

Opening weekend: During opening weekend (Sat 3 – Sun 4 Sep) there will be free artist talks provided by 12 exhibiting artists. Takaaki Sakaguchi, Maria Lee, Ruth Killoran, Patrick Barry and Tatyanna Meharry will be offering artist demonstrations. There will be a range of creative workshops on offer including ceramics, stone carving and clay time for 6–8 year olds. The festival is free entry. Tickets for artist demonstrations and creative workshops are sold separately, prices range from $10-$15 per person.

Full programme details www.artscentre.org.nz/whats-on/sculpture-festival/

The venue is wheelchair accessible, however demonstrations held in the Common Room are accessible only via stairs.