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Kiwis Show Heart As Tsunami Recovery Continues

March 16 2005

Kiwis Show Heart As Tsunami Recovery Continues

New Zealand’s top artists - and rugby players - have teamed up for an auction to benefit families affected by the Boxing Day earthquakes and tsunami in South Asia. The auction will include artworks inspired by the tsunami, ranging from a painting by Shane Cotton and a team-effort by the Hurricanes to a poem by Keri Hulme. Artistic Hurricanes Jerry Collins and Neemia Tialata enlisted the support of team-mates while on tour in Australia and South Africa.

“Through unity and teamwork the effectiveness of the relief effort will be maximised and this is reflected in the contribution by the entire Hurricanes team to the artwork,” says Hurricanes spokesman Greg Palmer. Despite having a six month waiting list on her work, Wellington artist Lynne Sandri dedicated 100 hours to a tsunami-inspired artwork to donate to the auction. “It felt like the right thing to do,” says Sandri

“So many people were helping in their own way and rather than all giving money it is nice to help by doing something that is an extension of ourselves.” Sandri’s painting is of a heavily textured Karaka tree. “The Karaka is native to New Zealand and we are all native New Zealanders. The pods of the Karaka were traditionally used for medicinal and healing purposes, and this is what the Red Cross is all about”, she says.

“The painting stands bold and strong like we do in helping the victims of this disaster and for the efforts of those that are there helping them recover.”

The list of artists who have donated paintings, sculpture, pottery and prints also includes Grahame Sydney, Michael Smither, Shona Moller, Susan Webb, Christine Boswijk, Gian McGregor, Maria Ifopo, Matt Gauldie, Gail Gauldie, Simon Kaan, Anna Stichbury, Elizabeth Knapp, Lisa Wisse, Jason Hicks, Ian Hamlin, Philip Trusttum, Nigel Brown, Neil Dawson, Kura Te Waru Rewiri, Michel Tuffery, Fatu Feu’u, Des Robertshaw, Robin White, and Dick Frizzell.

The auction will be held on March 23 at Shed 11 on the Wellington Waterfront. Artworks can be viewed online, and early bids can be made at www.redcrossartauction.org.nz .

“The auction is not limited to just those who can attend on the night. New Zealanders everywhere can support the auction by bidding online,” says Christine Langdon of New Zealand Red Cross.

About a dozen of the 28 artworks up for auction have been inspired by the tsunami.

“The auction has been an opportunity for many artists to think about what the tragedy has meant for them. Many of the artists have put a lot of heart into their contributions, which has resulted in some very special and touching artworks,” Christine Langdon says.

Full proceeds from the auction will go to the New Zealand Red Cross South Asia Tsunami Appeal.

New Zealand Red Cross has committed six aid workers to the South Asia tsunami relief efforts and raised $11 million, which is being channelled through the International Red Cross to provide ongoing assistance to tsunami-affected communities. This includes rebuilding homes, schools, and hospitals, restocking medical supplies, generating electricity and providing food and clean drinking water.

ENDS

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