For the past 33 years the Whakatāne community has been fortunate to be able to view art pieces selected as finalists for the Molly Morpeth Art Awards.

This year, and for the first time since the awards were established in 1986, there will be a second showing for 2019 Molly Morpeth Canaday Award – Painting and Drawing winning works.

Masterton is set to host 13 new award-winning artworks at Aratoi Wairarapa Museum of Art and History, fresh from the 2019 awards.

Awards co-ordinator Heather Hourigan said the new partnership with Aratoi was an ideal way to reach out to a different community.


"Audiences from the Wairarapa would not normally get to see this national award exhibition," Hourigan said. "We also liked the idea that this extended showing would highlight the opportunities open to Wairarapa artists."

This non-acquisitive award invites entries from New Zealand artists each year and celebrates a unique variety of conceptual, visual, and geographical terrain.

The 2019 Painting and Drawing Award attracted 500 entries, exhibited close to 80 finalists, and distributed a prize pool of more than $20,000 to 13 deserving artists.

Twelve of the winners were selected by international guest judge Chris McAuliffe (Australia); with one winner selected by public vote during the Whakatāne exhibition.

The Aratoi opening event featured a presentation by the awards co-ordinator Heather Hourigan, Aratoi director Susanna Shadbolt said.

For participating artists, the awards offer professional development opportunities by showcasing their practice to peers, collectors, critics, museum curators, the media and the community at large.

This special showing includes work by Mark Anstis (Ōpōtiki), John Brown (Hastings), Esther Deans (Auckland), Mary Duggan (Whakatāne), Kirsten Ferguson (Dunedin), Toby George King (Auckland), Teresa HR Lane (Auckland), Raewyn Martyn (Wellington), Nicola McCafferty (Wellington), Adrienne Millwood (Lower Hutt), Sena Park (Paihia), Danae Ripley (Auckland), and Lea-Anne Sheather (Whakatāne).

The award-winning pieces were open for viewing in Whakatāne throughout March and into the start of April before being moved to the Masterton showing where they will stay until June 23.


The exhibition of the winning works is toured by 2019 MMCA exhibition partners Arts Whakatāne and Whakatāne District Council, and hosted by Aratoi.