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Wellington Rewind

An entire month has passed since we wrapped up our first ever show in our vibrant Capital City. We've been soaking up warmly-received feedback from the public, who came out to support us in droves. Our enduring thanks to everyone involved for creating such an encouraging atmosphere over our three-day event, especially to our artists who travelled from all over Aotearoa, to showcase the best of NZ art with us.  

For those that missed out, let’s rewind- 

Autumn's just getting started, there’s a new, frosty edge to the night. But that's not all that is new! VIPS, artists, friends and family members; a community of art lovers have gathered to attend the opening of the inaugural Wellington Art Show. The entire second floor of Tākina, Wellington's state-of-the-art events centre has dramatically changed in less than 24 hours. Colour, texture, warmth… life! Fills the venue from ceiling to floor. Artists and staff who have spent the day setting up, making sure everything is picture perfect, anticipate the first influx of VIP guests, clad in pink lanyards. 

The night erupts in a celebration of art. As guests emerge from escalators, thoughtful chatter floats through the venue, as does the harmonious tunes of Wellington-based act, The Relatives Duo -the perfect musical accompaniment to the night. The mood is set. Everywhere guests are craning necks, looking up, pointing. Astonished at the variety of work, and the sheer size of the show. Every new turn is met with more art, every back turn and you see something you missed the first time! Art lovers are fully immersed, lost in a world of creativity. Glasses of Lawson's Dry Hills wine are raised in ode to a night with an emphasis on Art for Everyone. 

The night is paused briefly to announce the next finalist in our prestigious STUFF Art Aotearoa Gold Award for Art Excellence. Our lead judge, Karl Chitham accompanied by regional judge, Ron Epskamp and STUFF representative, Frances Morton have their winners. Before the big announcement, Wellington artists,  Zoe Cromwell and Zoe Marsden are awarded Highly Commended- both of these talented artists have  impressed the judges with the quality of their works presented. 

And drumroll please! Auckland artist, Sean Beldon is announced as our second Gold Award finalist. Sean is one of four finalists that are progressively selected and announced at each of our four art shows throughout the year - with the ultimate winner being selected after our final 2024 show in Queenstown. Sean is congratulated in a massive round of applause. 

Not to stop there, a favourite of the night, Sean Beldon is also Tanea Heke’s Celebrity Choice Winner. The fabulous Tanea Heke has joined us for the evening to judge this award in style!


Next up, The Space Cowboy closes off our awards announcement with a reality defying performance that amazes all. Chatter starts back up as the rest of the night seems to elapse quickly. There is lots of discussion of returning again on the weekend- there is still so much to see! Guests venture back out into the crisp night, cups filled, with new connections formed. Many have packaged up treasures, news stories to fill their homes. 

Lights out on Opening Night. Our Show Days roll over with an equal outpouring of support from the public. Who enjoy live demos by artists, Bruce Mortimer, Didi Chapman, Tatyana Kulida, Sally-Ann Davis and Darren Wallace. We wrap up the show officially on Sunday afternoon with the announcement of the Lawson’s Dry Hills People's Choice Award Winner. The award winner for each of our four shows PINK Awards is voted in on the spirit of being the "people's choice" by Art Shows Across Aotearoa’s audience, friends and supporters.  And by a landslide, Jamie Stewart is The Wellington PINK People's Choice Award Winner! His work, “Last Of Our Lands” was inspired by the notes on the bottle of Lawson's luscious Pink Pinot

An incredible art experience was had by all at Tākina, at Wellington's Largest Art Show with over four thousand unique pieces of art! We’ll see you next year Wellington, we can't wait to   do it all over again. It was truly a celebration of Art for Everyone.

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