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Mixing wine with art: Stunning one-off bottles unveiled ahead of charity auction

Three prestigious Kiwi artists and three premium Hawke’s Bay winemakers have come together to create one-off art bottles ahead of a community fund-raising event.

Hawke’s Bay’s Tony Bish Wines, Te Awanaga Estate and Te Mata Estate have each donated delicious wine, while Dick Frizzell, Martin Poppelwell and Freeman White have created beautiful works of art for the bottles.

To get the public excited, the bottles have been unveiled ahead of their auction, which takes place at the Night of Us event on March 19. Held at Hastings’ refurbished opera house Toi Toi, the Night of Us is already a sell-out event with profits going direct to the Hawke’s Bay Foundation .

Winemaker Tony Bish says he loved the idea of an artist and winemaker collaboration and couldn’t wait to get on board.

“I actually asked to be paired with Dick, having met him many years ago when he lived at Te Awanga. I have been a huge admirer of Dick’s work over the years – he is thoughtful, unique, intelligent and hugely talented.”

“The wine is from our finest vineyard. It’s a sensational block that produces a wine of concentration and power that has great longevity.”

Te Awanga Estate has been matched with artwork from Martin Popplewell, who is best known for his interpretation of text and familiar motifs. His long-standing interest in lazed ceramics, with ceramic elements are included in the finished auction lot. Te Awanga’s winemaker Rod McDonald is renowned for the success of his Syrah, and in this case,  has selected from the estate’s very best parcels harvested during the exceptional 2019 vintage.

The third bottle up for auction is the beautiful work of Te Mata Estate’s winemaker Phil Brodie and landscape artist Freeman White. Known as one of New Zealand’s most distinguished wineries, Te Mata Estate is offering a cabernet merlot, made of its finest available fruit from 2019, while White provides his contemporary take of New Zealand scenery.

Bish says the sale of these very special bottles offers a rare opportunity to art collectors across New Zealand.

“Both the artwork and the wine are truly sensational,” he says. “And it’s all for an excellent cause. We have many issues and challenges in our region, so it’s great to help where we can to build a stronger, healthier and more resilient community.”

Absentee bids can be arranged by emailing [email protected]

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