Sculptor gives up opportunity
It was a wonderful opportunity, but Ettrick sculptor Andrew Barr has had to give up the chance to take his art to Wellington next month as part of the NZ Art Show. ‘‘When we crunched the numbers, it was a lot of money to chase a dream,’’ Mr Barr said, ‘‘and I have got to balance it against our family and the mortgage.’’ One of just three artists from the south of the South Island among the 300 artists selected for a display before the main show, Mr Barr was nervous waiting to hear if he had been accepted. ‘‘There were more than 500 applications for the show; we had to send in photos of examples of our work and a statement of our philosophy and then wait to see if we were accepted,’’ he said. ‘‘It is a great place for emerging artists, and a lot of more famous people have got their start from there.’’ Although he was thrilled to have been chosen to display his work, he has had to be practical about things. Mr Barr would have had up to five pieces on show, but the stone he has been working with lately has broken at crucial times and in awkward places, and it has been difficult to ensure he had enough pieces to take north. ‘‘I would love to move from Oamaru stone to marble and alabaster as it is so much better to work with, although I have got on to some Mt Somers stone which is more reliable.’’ Mr Barr has been working with stone for six years, first becoming interested when he was stuck in an Indian village for two weeks with no money and waiting for his stolen passport to be replaced. ‘‘There the whole village worked in soapstone and I had a chance to try it out. ‘‘I find the Teviot Valley an inspiring place to live, I love the contrasts and the lines in the hills and I try and replicate it in the stone,’’ he said. Also accepted to exhibit were Jillian Porteous, of Cromwell, and Clinton Warren, of Invercargill. The show is expected to attract 10,000 people, with $300,000 in sales made on opening night last year.
Friday, June 21, 6pm
Whakaruruhau, Enterprise St, Alexandra
Celebrations: Dunstan High School kapa haka group members Canaan Napier, 16, Cajun Stringer, 16, Jordan Napier, 18, Malcolm Glover, 16, and, front, Alexandra and Districts Youth Trust team leader and youth worker Sharon Waples, Ta Ao Huri representative Mary-anne Tamati and Dunstan High School Maori teacher Richard Ferguson are excited about celebrating Matariki, the Maori new year, in Alexandra on Friday.
Reality check: Ettrick sculptor Andrew Barr and his 3-year-old son George with one of the pieces he would have taken to Wellington next month for the NZ Art Show.