I'm writing this in my spare room at home, which earlier in March, turned into my office. It has been the strangest of times, in some ways surreal; two weeks ago we were at the Miles Art Awards, celebrating the success of our Bay of Plenty Artists. Today we are self isolating within our bubble; keeping in touch with other family, friends and work colleagues through texts, emails, Messenger, Zoom, HouseParty and Skype video and phone calls. Talking over the fence to our neighbours and older family members; putting teddy bears in the window (and other places) for the children (and adults) going up and down the street, to find and enjoy.
There are positives in this change - more time; the constant rushing from place to place has stopped. Doing more together in our family bubble; getting out on our bikes, going for walks in the delightful autumn sunshine. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it's getting brighter each day.
We have postponed our April 'Conversation with Rex Homan' and also a May Art at Home with Graeme and Susan Horsley. We look forward to bringing these events to you at a later date.
In the meantime, whilst the Tauranga Art Gallery is closed, staff are working behind the scenes to develop on-line updates and as well, the opportunity to vote on-line (from desktop) for your favorite Miles Art Award Finalist. Gallery Director, Alice, has also suggested this link below (courtesy of Depot Artspace) as a great resource for interviews with artists and writers: culturalicons.co.nz
The Friends Committee will use our Facebook page to highlight other on-line events that will be of interest - starting with Kalou Koefoed, who you will know as Front of House for Tauranga Art Gallery. Kalou is a writer and artist and she recently installed her first exhibition 'The Basaloid Project' at the Incubator. It launches on the 9 April via Facebook and Instagram. It's a very personal story and we look forward to seeing it. Congratulations Kalou!
We wish all of you and your family to be safe and keep well during this time.
The Miles Art Awards 2020
A huge crowd of artists, their family and Friends members celebrated the finalists for the Miles Art Awards on Friday 21 March. The event is named after one of Tauranga Art Gallery’s original donors, Venetta Miles, who is remembered for her considerable foresight and generosity.
The Miles Art Awards is generously supported by The Venetta Miles Trust and made possible also thanks to the Friends of Tauranga Art Gallery, Tauranga Mayor, The Incubator Creative Hub, and the Bay of Plenty Times.
Guest judge Sarah Hudson announced the 2020 Miles Art Awards winners on the night.
Supreme Award: Israel Randall for Wahi Ngaro, 2019
Incubator Emerging Artist Award: Adrienne Ranson for Cloud, Rock, Mountain No.2, 2019
Ethel MacMillan Award: Brylee Courtney for Black Arena, 2019
Tauranga Mayor’s Award: Kevin McCardell for Plight of the Bumblebee, 2020
Friends of the Tauranga Art Gallery Award: Zig Beatnik for Anarchist, 2018
The winner of the Friends award, Zig Beatnik, works in security for Armourguard. The contrast between the structure and rules he adheres to in his role as a security guard and the freedom required to be an artist, was the inspiration for his winning work. Guest Judge Sarah Hudson mentioned, on her Saturday walk though, that she liked to stand up for causes she supports; hence the appeal of this work. Congratulations Zig!
To view all the finalists' work and vote for the Bay of Plenty Times People's Choice Award visit the Tauranga Art Gallery website. Please note that the voting page is not formatted for mobile devices & viewing is for larger screens, ideally desktop.
Photos thanks to Friend Lee Switzer
The Miles Art Awards 2020 - Judges Talk
The Miles Art Award judge for 2020 was Sarah Hudson - a contemporary artist herself and Exhibitions Curator at Te Koputu te whanga a Toi - Exhibition Whakatane. I joined Sarah and a group of others for a very interesting 'walk through' on the Saturday following the award ceremony of the Winners the previous evening.
Her walk through described her reasoning for the way the collections of art were displayed and how they represented a particular idea.
The FOTAG winner is shown above with a collection of other works with similar colourings and Sarah explained that this collection of work was an 'Ode to Ochre' - a colour she is particularly fond of. She had other groupings which represented the Tauranga CBD, nature, artists with new works and a collection with bold colour.
Sarah admired the excellence in the winning artist installation and mentioned how brave she was to send through her work with a page of instructions as to how it was to be displayed; this was done to perfection.
Friend Sue Speirs
Artists: Ibrahim Mahama (Cockatoo Island), No Friend but the Mountains, 2012-20, charcoal jute sacks, sacks, metal tags and scrap metal tarpaulin. Commissioned by the Biennale of Sydney with generous support from Anonymous, and assistance from White Cube. Courtesy the artist; Apalazzo Gallery, Brescia and White Cube, London / Hong Kong
NIRIN has been one of most engaging biennales I’ve had the privilege to attend. The opening week of the Sydney Biennale, the first to be artist and indigenous-led, was an occasion to meet many of the participating artists from all over the globe, attend performances at the Sydney Opera House and an intensive series of panel discussions.
Highlights included our participating artists from Aotearoa: Lisa Reihana’s stunning 3-D triple screen visual narrative, John Miller’s protest photography and Emily Karaka’s stunning new paintings at the Art Gallery of New South Wales (she gave a poignant opening speech).
Numerous impressive installations on Cockatoo island included a chilling tunnel installation, planting with Tony Albert and the vast expanse of Ghanaian Ibrahim Mahama’s installation referencing colonial trade routes. Before we knew it the NZ borders had closed and we hurried back on the plane home to quarantine.
Alice Hutchison, Director
Right: Teresa Margolles, ‘Approximation to the Scenes of the Facts,’ 2020, National School of Art
WE WANT YOU!
New Committee Members are needed for the following roles:
We are looking for an enthusiastic person to take on the Events Co-ordinator role on the Friends Committee. This means being involved in the organisation of our 'Art in the Afternoon' and 'Conversation with ...' and 'Art Away' Friends events . You will generally be the main contact with guest speakers and artists for our speaking events and liaise with the Gallery to ensure room availability for these events and catering requirements are covered. If arranging a trip away, the general logistics (i.e. bus bookings and liaising with the gallery we are visiting) will be part of your role, although we (the Committee) will all assist where necessary. The Committee works as a team, so there will always be Committee members/volunteers assisting at our events and you will organise sufficient support as required. You will also be responsible for keeping our Events calendar up to date.
We are looking for a creative and organised person to take on the Newsletter Co-ordinator role on the Committee. You will be responsible for collating the information required for the monthly newsletter. Ideally you'll have experience using Mailchimp and Canva, though training will be provided. You will liaise with Committee members to contribute on a regular basis and liaise with the Gallery re: upcoming events. As well, you'll provide both an electronic copy to the Gallery to update their website and a PDF version for printing and posting to non-email members.
Friends Committee contacts: Chair: Bridget Cummins: 027 4935782 Treasurer: Emma Wright Secretary:Alex Sutherland 027 252 2601 Membership Secretary: Sue Speirs Art in Afternoon/ Art Away Trips: Paula Harrison 021 2744116 Art at Home:/ Art in Studios: via Friends email Art at the Movies: Alex Sutherland 027 252 2601 Newsletter:Samantha Wilkie Social Media: Marama Mateparae
General email: email@example.com Mail address: Friends of the Tauranga Art Gallery, PO Box 13255, Tauranga, 3141