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Professional dev. a feature of Arts Board grants

Professional development opportunity a feature of Arts Board grants

Media release Date: 30 May 2003


Professional development opportunities a feature of Arts Board grants

Music scholarship recipients Andrew Conley and Joel Batson are among the artists supported to undertake research and professional development in the latest funding round of the Arts Board of Creative New Zealand, announced this week.

Young Auckland opera singer Andrew Conley, currently touring New Zealand in The Barber of Seville production, was awarded a Jack McGill Music Scholarship worth $9500 to undertake post-graduate opera studies at the Royal College of Music in London. He will begin the three-year diploma in September 2003.

The other scholarship recipient is Wellington musician Joel Batson, awarded a Butland Music Scholarship of $5000 to undertake percussion studies at the University of Miami. Principal timpanist with the NZSO National Youth Orchestra from 2000 - 2002, Batson will begin a two-year masters programme in August 2003.

Arts Board Chair Murray Shaw said it was vital that both emerging and established artists across all artforms were able to take up creative and professional development opportunities, both in New Zealand and overseas.

"Along with the obvious benefits to individual artists, these opportunities also have spin-offs for their colleagues to whom they pass on their insights and knowledge," he says. "And of course, New Zealanders also reap the rewards when they see, hear and read the work that's sparked by these professional development opportunities."

Another artist offered a grant under the Arts Board's Creative and Professional Development funding programme is mixed-ability dancer Lusi Faiva of Mt Roskill, Auckland. A $5000 grant will support her to undertake workshops in mixed-ability dance in Germany. A founding member of Touch Compass Dance Trust, Lusi Faiva is a professional dancer with a disability, who dances both in and out of her wheelchair.

Touch Compass Dance Trust's Artistic Director Catherine Chappell said that Lusi Faiva's ability to move the audience comes from her "unique personal qualities, response to audience reaction, a quick sense of humour and a winning smile. It was no accident that Lusi's Eden was choreographed to highlight these qualities."

In this funding round, the Arts Board received 602 applications for project funding seeking more than $8.8 million. In the end, it offered grants totalling $2.29 million to 177 projects.

Mr Shaw thanked the artform assessment committees for their recommendations to the Arts Board and acknowledged the challenges they faced in assessing applications within tight funding constraints.

Each of the 602 applications received by the Arts Board is assessed by artform committees, made up of practitioners and chaired by an Arts Board member. Their recommendations are reviewed and finalised by the Arts Board.

Mr Shaw commented that the craft/object art assessment committee faced considerable funding pressure in this round. "In a way, this was actually a positive feature," he said. "Although there was only a small increase in the number of craft applications, both the standard of the applications and quality of the projects have improved. It was also good to see a range of artists at different career stages and from across the craft/object art field."

Among the grants supporting craft/object art are:

* $12,000 to Steve Fulmer of Nelson to research the construction of paper clay sculpture

* $10,000 to Objectspace of Auckland towards curatorial research for an exhibition exploring the way that hand-made objects acquire meanings and values over time

* $8000 to Linda Bruce of Hastings to develop a new body of ceramic work

* $12,000 to Areta Wilkinson of Kingsland, Auckland to develop a new body of jewellery

* $10,000 to Warwick Freeman of Devonport, Auckland towards a publication documenting 20 years of jewellery practice that will accompany an exhibition of his work in Amsterdam in February 2004.

Artists were also supported to create new work, undertake residencies and present their work both in New Zealand and internationally. Creative New Zealand supports more than 40 residencies a year either through project funding or in partnership with other organisations. In this round, for instance, the Arts Board offered grants to the University of Auckland ($24,645); the University of Canterbury ($23,250); and the Dunedin College of Education ($10,000) towards their writer-in-residence programmes.

Also in Dunedin, the Otago Polytechnic and Nga Runanga o Arai Te Aru were offered a $6000 grant towards the 2003 Ngai Tahu residency programme for emerging artists. Artists already supported through this residency are Simon Kaan in 2000 and Kirsten Kemp in 2002.

Mr Shaw said that with each project funding round, there was a growing number of applications from new festivals, along with a general increase in the amounts requested from established festivals.

"We're committed to supporting the creation and presentation of New Zealand work at these festivals," Mr Shaw said. "They provide opportunities for artists, build audiences and provide access to high-quality arts, and they can be excellent cultural tourism events.

"It's encouraging to see that established festivals are working together but the number of festivals applying for funding is putting extreme pressure on our funding levels."

In this round, the New Zealand International Festival of the Arts was offered $277,000 towards the development and presentation of new New Zealand work at the 2004 Festival. Among the other festivals offered grants to create and present New Zealand work are: the Taupo Arts Festival ($20,000); the (09) 03 Contemporary Music Festival in Auckland ($25,000); the 4th Auckland Dance Festival ($17,500); and Fringe Auckland 04 ($23,000).

The Arts Board also supported projects showcasing New Zealand arts internationally. Among the grants offered are:

* $20,000 to the Indian Ink Theatre Company of Auckland towards presenting The Pickle King at the 2003 Edinburgh Fringe Festival

* $5000 to the Vancouver Writers' Festival to support the participation of Auckland writer C.K. Stead at the 2003 Festival

* $25,000 to Massive Company of Auckland towards touring The Sons of Charlie Paora to London.

Applications to the next funding round of Creative New Zealand close on 25 July 2003. Copies of the Funding Guide: Ngä Pütea 2003-2004 are available from Creative New Zealand offices or can be downloaded from the publications page of its website (www.creativenz.govt.nz).

ends

For a complete list of Arts Board grants please visit Creative New Zealand's website (www.creativenz.govt.nz/funding/grants/). For further information contact:

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