Three Whanganui artists are busy putting the final touches on their entries for the 2020 pattillo Whanganui Arts Review.
The 2020 pattillo Whanganui Arts Review submission day is February 18, so preparation time is running out.
Tracey Byatt, however, starts well ahead of time. Sugar is her medium and her work takes the better part of a year. She creates botanically correct flowers and plants, and won a merit award in the 2018 Arts Review.
"As soon as one finishes I start planning for the next. I work from life, so as soon as it comes up in the garden I study each stage to get it botanically correct. It's a hobby that can be time-consuming."
Her fragile creation is almost ready. And the bees love it, too. If she leaves a window open, hundreds of bees will consume a whole sugar flower in no time at all.
Jennifer Kenny, Ngāti Mutunga o Wharekauri and Te Roroa, says she usually has two or three works under way from which she can choose her entry. The Sarjeant's Facebook page alerts her about the upcoming Arts Review submission day date and then she starts preparing.
"It's the first art event of the year so you have a good month to prepare after the holidays. The first work I entered was a bit confusing. It took me a while to work out why it wasn't accepted. Then the next two years my work was accepted. It's all about promoting your art and getting the exposure."
Some of her work, such as the series of paintings Food, Wine & Company, explores how social interactions are often driven by these elements.
"I put cultural style and whānau, and wine and food in because I know people are going to relate. The subject matter is Māori culture and social whānau interactions. I want to show people out there a positive picture of my culture that I am proud of."
Prakash Patel has entered every year since 1994 and has won the Arts Review three times. He is preparing for a March solo exhibition in Auckland, and will also select an art work to submit for the review.
"I always have works in progress so that's why I don't do one specifically for the review. It will be similar to the new work I'm doing for this forthcoming exhibition, simplified and less cluttered. My work is often made up of layers and sometimes the results are unpredictable, I like the aspect of chance and discoveries within the painting process. It's like going on an adventure."
He can work quickly, especially in the summer months as paint dries quicker, which will allow him to have a work ready for February 18.
The selection of works to be exhibited is time-pressured as well. A panel will select the works for exhibition immediately after submission day and right away the Sarjeant curatorial team will hang them ready for the public opening on Saturday, February 29.
The winners of the open award, two excellence awards and the youth and merit awards will be selected by the 2020 Arts Review judge, who this year is Linda Tyler.
Tyler judged the review 10 years ago when it was at the Sarjeant at Pukenamu Queen's Park. Tyler has taught art and design history at Canterbury, Victoria and Waikato universities and currently teaches art writing and curatorial practice at honours level in the art history department at the University of Auckland. She also supervises student research in the university's museums and cultural heritage programme.
• The 2020 pattillo Whanganui Arts Review is open to artists of any age who live and work in the Whanganui region. Works of all media are acceptable for entry. To find out more, see the Sarjeant website.