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Wellington Zoo welcomes inaugural Artist in Residence

Wellington Zoo welcomes Phill Waddington, inaugural Artist in Residence

Celebrated Petone painter and environmentalist Phill Waddington is Wellington Zoo’s 2014 Artist in Residence.

‘We’re thrilled to announce our inaugural artist in residence programme, and delighted to welcome such a wonderful artist and passionate conservationist to Wellington Zoo,’ said Karen Fifield, Chief Executive.

Waddington was named the Wellingtonian of the Year – Environment at the 2013 Welly Awards after his lifelong love of wildlife led him to develop a world-leading humane pest trap, which he gifted to the Department of Conservation. It is now used nationwide to enable to recovery of New Zealand’s native birds.

During his residency Waddington will create a new body of work influenced by the animals at Wellington Zoo, and is donating the commission to the construction of the Meet the Locals precinct – a future space within the Zoo to talk about and care for our native wildlife.

’I’m really keen on painting endangered species – it’s all about the cause. The challenge will be to capture the portraits of individual animals!’ said Waddington.

The programme is kicking off with a Trade Me auction for Waddington’s portrait of Wellington Zoo’s lionesses, Djane; Djembe and Zahra, titled The Three Princesses.

The reserve for the original artwork is $2,000.

For the first time, limited edition prints of Waddington’s work will also be produced and sold in the Wellington Zoo gift shop, along with greeting cards.

If visitors see Waddington at work, they’re very welcome to come up to him and ask questions – ‘preferably about painting, though, as I don’t know too much about the animals yet!’

About Wellington Zoo

Wellington Zoo is New Zealand's first Zoo, established in 1906, and is Wellington’s oldest conservation organisation. Home to over 500 native and exotic animals, Wellington Zoo became a charitable trust in 2003.

Wellington Zoo became the world’s first carboNZero certified zoo in May 2013.

Wellington Zoo is an accredited member of the Zoo and Aquarium Association Australasia and a member of the World Association of Zoos and Aquariums.

Ends

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