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Waitakere City wins another Creative Places Award

Waitakere City wins another Creative Places Award

Waitakere City Council is a winner in this year’s Creative Places Awards - announced this morning at the Local Government New Zealand Conference in Queenstown.

Waitakere City won the ‘Built Environment: City Councils’ category for its West Wave Aquatic Centre. The City’s previous Creative New Zealand awards include the Premier Award for the Massey Leisure Centre and Library in 2002, and judges’ citations for ‘sustained commitment to arts innovation’ (2001) and the Rewarewa Footbridge in New Lynn (in 1999).

Judges described the award-winning West Wave extension as “a great collaboration between artists and cultural thinking, combining art with civic initiatives from a holistic point of view”.

In line with Waitakere City’s practice of giving artists equal status with other design professionals when creating civic spaces, sculptor Virginia King was hired to work with the architects from Creative Spaces on West Wave’s overall building concept.

Virginia King’s contribution can be seen, for example, in the colour schemes, the organic shapes of the pools and a number of sculptural water features. Working with the Council’s Arts Director, she also commissioned Dean Buchanan, Graeme Gash, Bernard Makoare, Te Warena Taua and Zeke Wolf to provide designs and artworks in ceramics, glass, paint and steel.

The Creative Places Awards, presented annually by Creative New Zealand, celebrates the vital role that local authorities play in the arts.

“The Awards celebrate the wonderful and innovative arts projects happening in communities throughout New Zealand,” says Elizabeth Kerr, chief executive of Creative Places New Zealand.

“All these projects are inspirational because they demonstrate the positive impact that creative places and spaces have on the wellbeing of New Zealand’s communities.”

New Plymouth District Council took the Premier Award for Puke Ariki, a cultural storehouse of library, museum and information services.

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