UC graduates make their mark on Art Show

29 May 2015

Five out of the 10 finalists of The Christchurch Art Award - part of The Christchurch Art Show - are graduates from the University of Canterbury's School of Fine Arts.

UC graduates make their mark on Art Show

Kate Beatty's top 10 piece Flying Heron

Five out of the 10 finalists of The Christchurch Art Award – part of The Christchurch Art Show – are graduates from the University of Canterbury’s School of Fine Arts.

UC Fine Arts graduates Kate Beatty, Stephanie McEwin, Nigel Wilson, Megan Huffadine and Janneth Gil all had artwork selected by judge David Woodings out of around 150 entrants.

Finalists Kate Beatty and Stephanie McEwin both graduated in 2014.

Beatty says she was honoured to have her artwork chosen.

“It was nice to be recognised for my work. To be chosen amongst 150 other works was honourable and I was quite taken aback,” says Beatty.

McEwin was the overall winner of The Christchurch Art Award last year and says she was very happy to be considered again.

“I was so pleased to hear the news that I was successful again, as I had put a rather gorgeous but expensive frame on my work, so it was worth it,” says McEwin.

McEwin is currently studying toward a Masters degree in Fine Arts specialising in painting at UC and is also a recipient of the Bickerton-Widdowson Trust Memorial Scholarship and the University of Canterbury Alumni Scholarship.

She says she has been very impressed with the Fine Arts programme at UC.

“It certainly has stretched me and challenged me to think outside my own comfort zones and enabled me to talk about my work in an informed way. I believe this will impact on my career as an artist.”

Nigel Wilson and Megan Huffadine graduated in 1982 and 1988 respectively. Both have lead successful careers as artists and teachers. Wilson taught art at an Invercargill high school for several years and has since been a full-time professional artist and Huffadine has taught art at various Polytechnic institutes as well as teaching private lessons and workshops.

Director of the School of Fine Arts Aaron Kreisler is delighted to have four University of Canterbury Fine Arts graduates in the top 10.

“It is great to see our students continuing to make a name for themselves through their art practice. We are so proud of the Art School’s rich creative legacy,” says Kreisler. 

McEwin says she is excited about the growing profile of the Christchurch art community.

“There is a great vibe in the art community right now, it’s very alive and producing a great batch of emerging artists,” says McEwin.

Ilam Press and the Christchurch Art Gallery are showcasing this success as they celebrate being awarded the top prize at this year’s Museums Australia Multimedia and Publication Design Awards (MAPDA) for Bulletin, an art gallery magazine. See this media release to learn more.

The Christchurch Art Show opening and awards night is on June 11th at the Wigram Air Force Museum events centre and continues every day until June 14th. See The Christchurch Art Show website for more details and to purchase tickets.

For further information please contact:
Kip Brook
Media Consultant
Student Services and Communications 
University of Canterbury
Ph: (03) 364 3325
Mobile: 027 5030 168
kip.brook@canterbury.ac.nz