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Nominations to recognise leaders in access to the arts


Date: 25 February 2014
Attention: Arts reporters / Chief reporters
Nominations to recognise leaders in access to the arts

Do you want to see an outstanding disabled artist recognised? Or how about a leader providing access to the arts for people in New Zealand? Nominations to this year’s Arts Access Awards, presented annually by Arts Access Aotearoa, close on Friday 14 March 2014.

The Arts Access Awards is the new name for the Big ‘A’ Awards, introduced in 2007 to acknowledge the contribution of individuals and organisations in providing access to the arts.

Richard Benge, Executive Director of Arts Access Aotearoa, says the name change was prompted by a desire to reflect more accurately what the awards support and to align them more closely with Arts Access Aotearoa’s purpose.

“The name change is about greater clarity but the actual event and its purpose remain the same,” he says. “As in 2013, there are six award categories. The nomination process is a great opportunity for people to play a part in recognising New Zealand’s leaders of access to the arts.”

The six award categories are:
• Arts Access Artistic Achievement Award, recognising the outstanding achievements and contribution of a New Zealand-based artist, who has a physical, sensory or intellectual impairment, or lived experience of mental ill-health
• Arts Access Creative Space Award, recognising the outstanding contribution and impact of a creative space that provides opportunities for people with limited access to make art, across any or all artforms
• Arts Access CQ Hotels Wellington Community Partnership Award, recognising a mutually beneficial partnership between two or more organisations or groups actively engaged in a community-based arts project
• Arts Access Creative New Zealand Arts For All Award, recognising a performing arts company, festival, venue, producer, gallery or museum that best demonstrates its commitment to developing its audiences by becoming more accessible to disabled and Deaf people.
• Arts Access Prison Arts Leadership Award, recognising the outstanding contribution of an individual using the arts as a tool to support the rehabilitation of prisoners or their reintegration into the community on release. The individual must be an employee, contractor or volunteer with the Department of Corrections.
• Arts Access Prison Arts Community Award, recognising the outstanding contribution of a community group or community organisation working with the Department of Corrections and using the arts as a tool to support the rehabilitation of prisoners or their reintegration into the community on release.

Arts Access Aotearoa is the key national organisation working to increase access to the arts for everyone in New Zealand, whatever their circumstances. Its key stakeholders are people with physical, sensory or intellectual impairments; individuals and organisations in the community and professional arts sectors; and people with lived experience of mental ill-health.

It is also the key organisation in New Zealand facilitating the arts as a tool to support the rehabilitative process of prisoners and their reintegration back into the community on release.

Each of the six awards has a nomination form. You are able to nominate yourself or others. For more information and nomination forms, please visit the Arts Access Aotearoa website ( or contact Claire Noble at Arts Access Aotearoa (T: 04 802 4349 E: Nominations close at 5pm on Friday 14 March 2014.


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