It has been very much like Christmas for volunteers at the Central Stories Museum and Art Gallery during the past few days, as they opened 60 parcels, and each was a surprise.
Central Stories general manager Maurice Watson said the facility had been given the opportunity to organise and host this year’s Arts Gold Awards, taking over from the Central Otago District Arts Trust, which launched the art competition in 2011.
The trust will continue to provide support for the competition.
The event is held every two years and submissions from artists throughout the country are invited.
A judging panel then selects 60 “standout pieces” and their creators are asked to send their works to Alexandra for inclusion in the awards.
Mr Watson said about 200 submissions were received.
The 60 art works had been posted or delivered to the museum during the past few days and each of them were recorded and will be hung or displayed at Central Stories art gallery.
One entry will be given the Supreme award and a prize of $5000, one will receive the Outstanding Central Otago artist award, worth $3000, and two will receive merit awards valued at $1000 each.
He said about 60% of the entries came from outside the Central Otago region including about 20% from the North Island.
“It is an opportunity for Central Otago artists to compete with other artists from throughout New Zealand.
“It is also an opportunity for Central Otago audiences to see what they might not ordinarily see.”
The exhibition starts on September 16 and will be open to the public on September 17.
“On the Sunday, the judges will do a floor talk, walking around the exhibits and talking about what stood out for them [about each piece], and why they made the choice they made.”
Trust co-ordinator Rebekah de Jong said opening the parcels was very much like Christmas.