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Crab and rabbit visitors’ favourite

Media release
20 February 2014

Crab and rabbit visitors’ favourite

Jamie Pickernell’s sculpture ‘Oh Crabby, I do believe we’re rather lost!’ has won the People’s Choice Award at the Auckland Botanic Gardens’ biennial sculpture exhibition.

The award, sponsored by the Friends of the Auckland Botanic Gardens, was voted for by the public during the three and a half month exhibition and announced at the closing of Sculpture in the Gardens 2013/14.

Friends president Bill Burrill says the People’s Choice Award gives exhibition visitors a voice.

“It is always exciting to see which sculpture the public connected with the most. This year only 95 votes, out of 10,000, separated Jamie Pickernell from Ben Foster’s ‘The White Horse’, making it an extremely close contest,” he says.

Jamie Pickernell was thrilled with his win.
“I’m feeling honoured! Sculpture in the Gardens is an event where, as a sculptor, the opportunity to show your work to such a diverse audience is second to none. I get to share my work with a public that wouldn’t normally go to a gallery.

“We all love a good story, and I’ve really enjoyed seeing the public create their own stories for Crabby and Rabby. As a self-taught blacksmith, I’ve become an adventurer with materials, trying to make cool things. Sometimes it works!” he says.

Auckland Botanic Gardens manager Jack Hobbs says over 370,000 people have visited Sculpture in the Gardens since it opened in November 2013.

“We feel privileged to host an event that makes art accessible to the diverse Auckland public and have been delighted with the number of people who have come to the exhibition, enjoyed the Gardens and taken the opportunity to learn more about sculpture,” he says.


• The McConnell Property Supreme Award was won by Auckland artist Louise Purvis for ‘Alterations’
• The Friends of the Auckland Botanic Gardens purchase an artwork from each exhibition, for the Gardens permanent collection. This year they purchased Bing Dawe’s ‘Tuna’
‘Oh Crabby I do believe we’re rather lost!’ is an andesite, steel and stainless steel sculpture. It has been purchased by a private collector.
• Jamie Pickernell’s ‘Teenage Text Bunny’ featured in the 2009/10 exhibition, and ‘Bird Lady’ won the People’s Choice Award at the 2011/12 show. Bird Lady remains in the Gardens as part of the permanent collection.
• Winners of the exhibition’s writing competition were inspired by Oh Crabby and The White Horse.

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