Premier Portage Award 2014

Louise Rive - The Space Between.
Kate Fitzharris - After the Feelings Come the Thoughts.
Madeleine Child - He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not.
Duncan Shearer - Bottle and Two Cups.
Frank Checketts - Wheel.
Chris Weaver - Pitched Pourers.
Established ceramic artist Louise Rive has won the country’s top ceramic honour, the 2014 Premier Portage Award for her figurative work, The Space Between.

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Established ceramic artist Louise Rive has won the country’s top ceramic honour, the 2014 Premier Portage Award for her figurative work, The Space Between.

Established ceramic artist Louise Rive has won the country’s top ceramic honour, the 2014 Premier Portage Award for her figurative work, The Space Between.

The Award, with a value of $15,000 was presented to Ms Rive by this year’s international judge, Takeshi Yasuda (Japan) at a ceremony held in West Auckland’s newly opened Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery (formerly Lopdell House Gallery) on Thursday 6 November.

Mr Yasuda says the winning work displays an overwhelming sense of emotion.

“In selecting the winner, I look first and foremost at whether the work moves me; it needs to tell a story and capture my attention emotionally or spiritually.

The Space Between conveys powerful universal feelings that people anywhere in the world can relate to. The work’s quality of finish is excellent, but it does not overpower nor is it independent of the expressive quality of the work.”

Based in central Auckland, Ms Rive has been painting and making ceramic works for more than 30 years.

Four 2014 Portage Merit Awards were also announced. The merit award winners are:

Otago’s Kate Fitzharris for her work, After the Feelings Come the Thoughts which Mr Yasuda says “engages you immediately with its child-like quality which belies the sophistication and careful use of materials seen in the work.”

Another Otago artist, Dunedin’s Madeleine Child, for He Loves Me, He Loves Me Not described by Mr Yasuda as very expressive and powerful in its sense of materiality.

Paeroa clay artist, Duncan Shearer for his ‘carefully balanced and skillfully thrown” triptych Bottle and Two Cups.

Central Auckland artist Frank Checketts for his “austere, beautiful and powerfully sculptural” work Wheel.

Each merit award winner received $1,500.

An inaugural, international scholarship was also announced at the ceremony which was awarded to Hokitika ceramicist Chris Weaver.

Mr Weaver wins a workshop scholarship to the Peters Valley School of Craft in New Jersey, USA.

The 2014 Portage Ceramic Awards winners and finalist works will be on exhibition at Te Uru from 7 November 2014 - 8 February 2016.

The 50 works in the exhibition vary in size from fingernail-minute to multi-piece, metre-high installations, and range in colour from porcelain white to eye-popping psychedelic. They were selected from more than 260 entries by clay artists all over the country.

A People’s Choice Award will also be given this year. Entry forms for the public to vote for this Award are available at the exhibition.

Established in 2001, The Portage Ceramic Awards are New Zealand’s premier showcase for the ceramic arts. Administered by Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery and funded by The Trust’s Community Foundation, the awards are the country’s best known barometer identifying our finest ceramic artists.

These annual awards and exhibition provide a vital platform to showcase the diversity of ceramic artists nationwide.

Media release: Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery

Written by

The Big Idea Editor

7 Nov 2014

The Big Idea Editor

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