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2016 Award Winners Announced

EMBARGOED MEDIA RELEASE For public release Tuesday 6 September 2016

Award Winners Announced The 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016

The 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016, with prizes amounting to over $220,000, will be presented by the Chairperson of the Jury for the first awards in 1992 and for a number of years thereafter, Philippa Lady Tait at the Pah Homestead, TSB Bank Wallace Arts Centre, Monday 5 September 2016.

This year the Wallace Arts Trust received 371 entries from which 88 were selected as finalists. From the finalists 47 have been chosen for the Award Winners & Travelling Finalists exhibition and the balance is represented in the Salon des Refusés.

The Wallace Art Awards aim to support, promote and expose New Zealand contemporary art and artists. They are the longest surviving and largest annual art awards of their kind in New Zealand.

2016 AWARD WINNERS – The People’s Choice Award of $750 is announced at the end of the touring exhibition. The Wallace Arts Trust Paramount Award Andre Hemer, Big Node #10, 2015, Acrylic and pigment on canvas 1375 x 1025 Andre Hemer receives a 6 month residency at the International Studio and Curatorial Program in New York, USA.
Fulbright-Wallace Arts Trust Award Simon Morris, A Whole and Two Halves (yellow Ochre), 2016, Acrylic on canvas,

1400 x 1400

Simon Morris receives a 3 month residency at the Headlands Center for the Arts in San Francisco, USA.
The Kaipara Wallace Arts Trust Award Jeremy Blincoe, Tropic Of Chaos, 2016, Pigment ink-jet print, 1200 x 1350 Jeremy Blincoe receives a 3 month residency at the Altes Spital in Solothurn, Switzerland.
The Wallace Arts Trust Vermont Award Weilun Ha, Breathtakingly Fragile, 2016, Traditional Chinese inks and resins on fabric, 3000 x 2000 Weilun Ha receives a 3 month residency at the Vermont Studio Center in Vermont, USA.
First Runner-up Award Matthew Browne, Sophistes, 2016 Vinyl tempera and oil on canvas, 1750 x 1200 Matthew Browne receives $2,500.
Second Runner-up Award Antje Barke, Tamaki Redevelopment Retaining Wall Steel, 2016, concrete, foam, 1200 x 1000 x 400 Antje Barke receives $2,500.
Jury Award Josephine Cachemaille & Jen Bowmast, Are you picking up what I am putting down?, 2016, Mixed media, 1900 x 2000 x 700 This prize is non-monetary.

About the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2015 Winners

Andre Hemer

Winner – The Wallace Arts Trust Paramount Award

Andre Hemer has dual German-New Zealand citizenship and currently resides in Austria. He has a MFA (Distinction) University of Canterbury 2006, more recently completing a PhD in Painting from the University Sydney in 2015. His work is held in many public collections in New Zealand, including the James Wallace Arts Trust, and in Asia. Hemer has been represented in many exhibitions over the last ten years, with the major UK exhibition ‘100 Painters of Tomorrow’ (Beers Contemporary, London, 2014) a career highlight. This show coupled with the Thames & Hudson published book of the same title. Notably a painting by Hemer was selected as the only cover image of this publication. Distinctive to Hemer’s style and practice is mark-marking formed through a duality of means. It is abstraction resulting from the digital and hand-made, or with one taking lead over the other. Colour is always key, luminous and brightly pitched suggestive of the screens everywhere around us. Evolvement in style can be considered with the recent ‘Big Node’ series. His painting has developed with the physical presence of textured paint and flatness of reproduced image; forming new modes of exploration.

From Andre Hemer’s artist statement:

This work comes out the ‘Big Node’ series of paintings that I have been developing over the past 18 months—and form a part of my larger practice that I term as a mode of ‘New Representation’ in painting, whereby image and form are transferred back and forth between materialised and de-materialised states. I begin my working process by digitally scanning sculpted forms of paint. These digital images are then re-materialised as printed canvas and used as a base upon which layers of paint are added. The combination of the light sources (the LED light of the scanner and the intruding natural light that leaks under the lid) create images that appear digital but are not produced in a digital way. The images are then overworked with spray paint, acrylic, oil and very three- dimensional impasto to create surfaces that are both optically and physically complex. The ‘Big Node’ works attempt to emphasise a perceived tussle between flatness and physicality, materiality and digital image we are confronted with different versions of forms—combining aspects of the contemporary experience of image and material and distilling it into a painting object.

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust

Simon Morris
Winner – Fulbright-Wallace Arts Trust Award

Simon Morris graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Canterbury University in 1985 and holds a MFA from R.M.I.T. in Melbourne. He is Senior Lecturer at the School of Art Te Whiti Rehua at Massey University since 1999. Morris is represented in many national collections, and has featured in a number of exhibitions – solo/group shows in New Zealand and overseas.

From Simon Morris’ artist statement:

To introduce my practice the primary focus is the exploration of visual systems, their proliferation and rupture in space and time. This is explored through a multi-layered painting practice that examines new thinking in site responsive wall drawing, architectural collaboration and conceptual abstract painting. My current work uses geometric structures to explore the concept of reduction. This is played out in various forms through processes that divide space, while decreasing and decreasing amounts of paint in a systematic manner. Works such as ‘A whole and Two Halves (yellow ochre) 2016 entered in this competition increase tone and colour value by doubling layers. Both processes contribute more broadly in a visual contemplative manner to a discussion around the idea of ‘less’ in terms of daily experience, considering how much or how little.

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust

Weilun Ha
Winner – Wallace Arts Trust Vermont Award

Weilun Ha has a Master of Architecture from the University Of Auckland and is the founder of Blackbeat Designs/inc. He works commercially as a designer in graphics, fashion and architecture. Ha’s style is distinctive with his application of calligraphic brushwork and inks forming a reference to traditional Chinese ink drawing. The scale of his work is notably impressive – this work and his previous entries in the Wallace Awards have all reached 3 metres in scale. Ha’s concerns are formed by juxtaposing traditional Chinese motifs with biographic or political references

From Weilun Ha’s artist statement:

I had a near death experience as a kid, my father took me on a swimming lesson and waves of water crashed on top of me and my lungs were filled with water. It took me months before i healed and breathing problems still persist at times. I always envisioned I would do great things, I didn't do many sports as a grew up, which lead me on a journey to paint and do more indoor things.

Over the years I’ve made huge paintings that symbolized my life. Trees on the right of the lungs provide oxygen but are withering away as they age as a symbol to life, with each person fulfilling their task and then leaving this life after they are finished their ripple in time. Each individual stem and capillaries speaks about family and individuality. We are all different in size of gifts (each shape and pattern is different) but we all work as one to keep balance and unity to the world. The selection of technique reflects the dying tradition of Chinese porcelain, as many of the techniques are becoming obsolete. The breath taking art form also ties in with the battle for survival idea.

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust

Jeremy Blincoe
Winner – The Kaipara Wallace Arts Trust Award

Jeremy Blincoe graduated in 2006 with a Diploma in Photography from Massey University, (Wellington) and has been based in Melbourne since 2008. He has exhibited regularly throughout Australia since 2010, with further shows in Korea and France over this period. His background in advertising is apparent with imagery that is bold and highly produced. The result being a composite image, formed through the initial photographed subject digitally post-produced at a later stage. But in contrast to the usual motives of advertising, Blincoe has wider social and environmental concerns to address in his work.

From Jeremy Blincoe’s artist statement:

[My works are] set in or against a variety of strange and mysterious natural settings that I either shoot on-location or edit in during post-production: limestone and rock caves; the undulating dunes of a sandy desert; the cracked and blackened-earth shores of a dried up lake…. While adding dramatic visual impact, they also function as signifiers of the beauty and/or degradation and destruction our natural environment suffers through human intervention and natural disaster.

Jeremy Blincoe, 2016

Blincoe’s works are inevitably set at dusk, that non-time between light and dark, the interzone between wakefulness and slumber where the imagination tends to wander, creating chimera from shadows. Set in the Victorian wilderness, he drapes his actors in garb that he himself designs, creating a sense of arcane ritual that…gives one pause.

Ashley Crawford, ‘The Myth of Progress’, essay 2016

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust

Matthew Browne
Winner – First Runner-up Award

Matthew Browne studied at Camberwell College of Arts in London, gaining a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Painting in 1982. He graduated at the Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland with a Master of Fine Arts (Honours) in 2000.

Browne has exhibited his work widely throughout New Zealand and the UK. His work is represented in private collections in New Zealand, UK, Australia, Denmark, Singapore, Canada and the USA. Public collections include the Parliamentary Collection, Wellington, The Royal Overseas League, London and The James Wallace Arts Trust.

From Matthew Browne’s artist statement

'Sophistes' is a work from a recent body of paintings collectively entitled 'Theoria' – the Greek word from which the English words theory and theatre are derived, meaning “contemplation, speculation, a looking at, things looked at”. As this and previous titles (Phantasmagoria, Noumena) indicate, my work has long been concerned with accessing and manifesting that which is mostly not quite knowable to the senses. The work asks us whether we can appreciate abstract ideas and realize them in a material sense, in the tradition of Greek philosophers Plato and Aristotle and their heirs, including Kant.

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust

Antje Barke
Winner – Second Runner-up Award

Antje Barke is completing a BFA/BA Conjoint Degree at Elam School of Fine Arts, and was awarded First-class Honours for her BFA last year. Her work featured at the Shanghai Power Station of Art in 2013 and she has exhibited in several Auckland venues. Barke’s practice can be regarded as inter-disciplinary encompassing video, photography and sculpture; with concerns being locality, architecture, and sociological critique.

From Antje Barke’s artist statement

This specific piece came from an installation of a body of work I titled ‘Special Housing Areas’, which initiated my current area of research through exploring these themes in relation to place. In these works, I focused my site specific concerns on the transitional sites of the Auckland unitary plan, drawing ideas, imagery, and artifacts from the displaced community spaces of architectural/urban planning heritage sites and state-house communities such as Glenn Innes, Orakei, and Hobsonville Point. The work was born out of ideas of the process of gentrification and states of transition, where sub-structures such as Tamaki Redevelopment Retaining Wall, which embodied formal critique of weight and structural stability, were juxtaposed against silk printed photographs of the original sites in transition and fragments of rubble. Tamaki Redevelopment Retaining Wall displays the critique of modernist developments by eluding to faulty structures.

EMBARGOED DETAILS Public Release: Tuesday 6 September 2016, about the 25th Annual Wallace Art Awards 2016 Winners, produced by the Wallace Arts Trust


Winner – Jury Prize

Cachemaille & Bowmast
Josephine Cachemaille & Jen Bowmast's conversation began recently as distance students of AUT’s post graduate art programme. Working collaboratively during The Vanguard Project has introduced new and unexpected terrain for both artists - working in a performative fashion, exposing their processes to a wider and unpredictable collaboration with each other and the public.

Josephine Cachemaille, Post Graduate Diploma in Art and Design, AUT and Bachelor of Arts, University of Otago. Jen Bowmast is currently studying towards an MFA in sculpture at Ilam, University of Canterbury.

From Cachemaille & Bowmast artist’s statement

This installation of costumes and tools were created during a six week residency in Nelson’s Salt gallery. The artists established the gallery as a working studio using the surrounding area as a source of materials, meanings and methods of making. The project investigated both the demystification and mystification of art practice by exposing the usually hidden art making, artists’ experiments, tests and failures. The public was invited to participate as active collaborators by contributing suggestions, materials and wearing the works.

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