Nana set creative ex­am­ple

Coastal News - - News -

Gain­ing in­spi­ra­tion from life and land­scapes on the Coro­man­del is a re­cur­ring theme for artists fea­tured in this year’s Big Arts Day Out.

Cherry Est­court talks to artist Nikky Seales about the Big Arts Day Out and Har­courts Art Chal­lenge, and how these sorts of events are help­ing her creative pur­suits.

What in­spires you?

I am in­spired by every­thing . . . the stun­ning en­vi­ron­ment of the Coro­man­del, songs, smells, emo­tions, the way a feather floats, the curve of a fig­ure — I mean every­thing. Art has al­ways been very emo­tive for me and this is por­trayed in my work, be it a paint­ing, carv­ing or more re­cently my clay work.

Tell us about your in­flu­ences ...

My ear­li­est in­flu­ence would have to have been my nana, she was the most creative, pro­duc­tive

per­son I ever knew, back in the days of “coun­try women’s divi­sion” they would al­ways come up with creative chal­lenges — be it bak­ing, flo­ral ar­rang­ing or some sort of craft, she al­ways gave it her best. Her home was al­ways full of pro­jects on the go. Be­ing a wed­ding cake maker, there was al­ways su­gar craft around. I sim­ply adored her cre­ations and I have gained a whole new un­der­stand­ing around a plaque I once owned which says: “Creative minds are never tidy”. Nor was her house, but oh boy you couldn’t help but be in­spired when you walked in her front door. I wanted to grow up to be just like her, and in a way I have.

When did you come to Whanga­mata?

I moved to Whanga­mata in my early 20s, opened a can­dle and craft shop once my daugh­ter started school. The gift shop and gallery went through many in­car­na­tions over the 23 years of own­ing and op­er­at­ing it, fi­nally clos­ing its doors three years ago as the well-loved (and missed) Budda Lounge. It was not an easy de­ci­sion to make but the best thing I ever did, al­low­ing more time to con­cen­trate on my pas­sion — art! I now work as a full­time artist from home. What are you work­ing on now?

I am cur­rently work­ing on a range of out­door gar­den sculp­tures, each piece in­di­vid­ual, this range will be re­leased at the Big Arts Day Out. This is such a great show in con­junc­tion with the Har­courts chal­lenge, kick­ing off with a pre­view cheese and wine even­ing, spon­sored by Whanga­mata New World.

Whanga­mata Artist Nikky Seales at work.

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