Auckland artist Juliana Duran is the winner of the 2022 Small Sculpture Prize, for her work Petrified Primordial Landscape. A work that is a symbolic vindication of the artist’s Latin-American roots.
The artist comments “It speaks of hybrid experiences that today show more relevance from my own migrant status in a country that is also going through other forms of hybridization. It’s a rescue of a sense of identity and belonging”.
In talking about the works selected for the exhibition, Dr Kriselle Baker, commented on the theme of fragility that was obvious in so many of the works submitted in 2022 reflecting the global difficulties of the past couple of years and which underpinned her selection of works for the prize exhibition.
The $3,000 prize is the only award for small sculpture in New Zealand, and the exhibition is proudly sponsored by Perpetual Guardian, in association with Te Motu Vineyard. The award was announced at the Waiheke Community Art Gallery on 3 June by Jennifer Tweed of Perpetual Guardian.
Two other awards were also presented, The Gallery Benefactors Award of $1500 went to Birgit Moffatt of Otaki, for Kohatu a work created in Harakeke, which takes an explorative approach to creating delicate three-dimensional forms that remind us of rocks, yet convey a strong sense of lightness, flexibility and fragility; the cast shadows investing the work with depth.
And the emerging artist Award of $500 went to Waiheke resident Agata Christie for The Messengers. A native of Poland who trained in Krakow and France, Agata’s work comprises of Seven Plague Doctor masks, and references the new plague that we have watched creep across seven continents and the messengers that have brought us the daily toll over seven days of each week.
A total of 28 works by 14 finalists were selected for the exhibition from 60 submissions
The Small Sculpture Prize was initiated by the Waiheke Community Art Gallery in 2009. It continues to draw entries from all parts of New Zealand and has become the benchmark for small sculptural exploration while offering artists the opportunity for critical review.
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