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Cream of the creative crop celebrated at inaugural Arts Awards

Cream of the creative crop celebrated at inaugural Arts Awards

Ten prestigious awards totalling $360,000 were presented this week at the inaugural Macquarie Private Wealth New Zealand Arts Awards.

The Arts Foundation awards included five $50,000 Laureate Awards, three $25,000 New Generation Awards, the $25,000 Marti Friedlander Photographic Award and the first $10,000 Mallinson Rendel Award for children's book illustrators.

Laureates announced include musician Whirimako Black, photographer Fiona Pardington, writer Emily Perkins, filmmaker Leanne Pooley and choreographer/director Lemi Ponifasio.

Musician/artist Sam Hamilton, who is currently on tour with Lemi in Europe, received a New Generation Award alongside photographer Ben Cauchi and playwright Eli Kent.

Fiona Pardington's brother Neil received the Marti Friedlander Photographic Award and the inaugural recipient of the Mallinson Rendel Award was David Elliot.

Arts Foundation chair Fran Ricketts said it was an opportunity to celebrate philanthropic support for the arts.

"All of our awards are privately funded or secured. We expect to grow the amount of donations to artists presented at these awards through private partnerships and are already in discussion with a number of philanthropists about establishing new awards."

The foundation is also producing a series of events on the Auckland Waterfront. The Wynyard Quarter Arts Series features a writers walk, outdoor cinema, a concert in silo park, a series of events in the Stoneleigh 'pop up' container bar, an information hub where viewers can watch the TVNZ 7 series The Artists and a literary sandpit for children featuring the writing of Arts Foundation Icon Margaret Mahy with illustrations by David Elliot.