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Artwork Gifted to Waikato Museum

20 November 2013

Prominent Waikato artist Zena Elliot (Ngati Awa, Te Whanau-a-Apanui) has gifted a substantial artwork to The Waikato Bequest Trust, a charitable trust formed to grow Waikato Museum’s collections.

The artwork in the form of two large paintings titled ‘Familiar Spaces, 2012’ is a diptych Elliott exhibited recently at the Calder and Lawson Gallery at the University of Waikato. New Zealand Listener reviewer Edward Hanfling described the art work as a “powerful and substantial example of the artist's immersion in popular culture with Maaori references” and said Elliot “seems to have risen up suddenly, like a taniwha from the wetlands of the Waikato, to breathe new life into New Zealand art.”

Elliot was inspired by the Trust’s commitment to the development and support of arts and culture for the Waikato region.
“I chose to gift in particular ‘Familiar Spaces’ because it raises important questions about Maaori identity and popular culture and I want future generations to have access to the artwork.”

“I believe it is important to build up and maintain a collection of artworks that were created or inspired by the region, to become a valuable source of historical information relating to events, changes, situations and discussions within the current art practice of the artist of that time.

“A collection that holds artworks that illustrate an arts time-line will help future generations understand key developments and effects on art within the Waikato region and New Zealand. “

David Fowler, Chairman of the Waikato Bequests Trust says he is excited and most appreciative of Zena’s gift.

“When artists of such stature donate works to the Trust collection, they know their work will be cared for and exhibited by Waikato Museum. The Waikato Bequest Trust, in partnership with the Hamilton City Council, has negotiated a loan agreement to place its collections under the professional care of the Museum. This ensures gifts and bequests remain in the Waikato and are available for generations to come.”

All items gifted or bequeathed to the Waikato Bequests Trust remain the property of the Trust in perpetuity. The Trust is registered as a Charitable Trust
(CC22974) and enquiries can be made to David Fowler, phone 07 838 6956.

Image: Waikato Bequests Trust Chairman David Fowler and Waikato Museum Director Cherie Meecham with artist Zena Elliot at the handover of the artwork ‘Familiar Spaces, 2012’ at Waikato Museum.


For further information please contact:
NAME: Louise Belay
DESIGNATION: Waikato Museum Partnerships and Communications Manager
TEL ( Direct): 07 838 6956
MOBILE: 021 536 557