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Three NZ Artists Awarded Wild Creations Residencies

To:Chief Reporter/ Arts Reporter/ Conservation Reporter

Three New Zealand Artists Awarded Wild Creations Residencies

Three New Zealand artists - Darren Glass, Naomi Lamb and Monique Jansen – have been selected by the Department of Conservation and Creative New Zealand to take up Wild Creations artist residencies in 2005.

Wild Creations is a partnership between the Department of Conservation and Creative New Zealand. It aims to foster links between conservation and artists by encouraging artists to create work inspired by New Zealand's unique places, people, stories and the natural environment.

Auckland photographer Darren Glass, has chosen Tongariro National Park as his residency site. He will use a unique type of homemade pinhole camera to record images of the three major walks in the area. With his multi aperture pinhole cameras he aims to use "an inventive means of capturing experiences and wonders of the natural landscape that otherwise escape the eye."

Lyttleton digital media artist and VJ Naomi Lamb, will travel to Karamea on the West Coast to develop a video instillation of footage and soundtracks from the area. She visited Karamea a number of years ago and says she is "in awe of the diverse landscape" and that the memory of the forest, plants and landscape drew her back to the area.

Monique Jansen is an Auckland visual artist who has chosen Aoraki/Mount Cook as her residency site. She specialises in drawing, painting and print. She says she was inspired by the alpine environment after a trip to Nepal, and wants to focus on how the little things within the alpine environment, contribute to the large scale picture of the Southern Alps and glaciers. She will use large scale pencil drawings, based on the minute detail of the alpine environment.

More than 60 artists applied for the 2005 six-week residencies, which will take place at a range of conservation sites throughout New Zealand. Fifteen artists were shortlisted, before this year's three residents were chosen. DOC provides accommodation and logistical support for the artists. Creative New Zealand provides a stipend of $5000, plus up to $1000 for travel and materials for each artist.

Chair of the selection panel, Kerry Marshall (Chair of the New Zealand Conservation Authority) said the panel was impressed with the high calibre of entries and thanked the artists for the time and thought put into their applications.

Members of the panel included staff from DOC and Creative New Zealand, as well as one of the previous Wild Creations artists, Rebekah Wild. The panel looked for applications that showed understanding of the purpose of the Wild Creations programme and how a residency would expand their practice. They also looked for a clear expression from the artists of a connection between the natural and cultural values of their chosen area and how a residency in that area would inform and inspire their work.

"We are very excited about the potential of the three chosen artists, as they ranked very highly against the selection criteria." Mr Marshall said.

Sally Airey, programme co-ordinator for DOC, said that the residencies were a fantastic opportunity to promote New Zealand's natural and historic heritage.

Creative New Zealand's chief executive, Elizabeth Kerr, said that Creative New Zealand is delighted by the ongoing strength of the Wild Creations applications and the programme itself.

"The Wild Creations programme has captured the imagination of both New Zealand artists and the public. Locating artists in some of the most inspiring environments in the country has enabled them to find new directions in their work and have the time to explore these," Miss Kerr said.


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