We are a staunchly Waikato organisation, so we value every opportunity we get to work with, and add value to, world-beating Waikato brands.

So when Fieldays asked us on short notice to help them find a new prize sponsor for their fantastic No.8 Wire Art Awards, we said “look no further, we’ll do it!”.

The well-attended opening night of the exhibition, at the Artspost in Hamilton’s South End in early July, was the only ‘real world’ Fieldays event held this year (the rest being the pioneering and hugely successful Fieldays Online).   

Kelvyn’s speech was well received and the effusive support from the other speakers ensured the room fully appreciated Momentum Waikato’s work across the region. And those from elsewhere were well introduced to the role of community foundations across the country.

The No.8 Wire Art Awards bring together town and country and is a unique juncture of the rural and creative industries, as evidenced by the diverse crowd. It is certainly unusual to have ‘naïve’ and professional artists competing against each other. The sheer conceptual range of the work on display demonstrated this annual competition and exhibition is the quintessential celebration of Kiwi Ingenuity.

It was a pleasure on the night to see the first prize go to ‘Space Cow’ by Asaki Kajima from Napier, second to ‘Specimens’ by Anna Gedson from Ōpōtiki, and third to ‘Piupiu: Reflections’ by Jack Gower from Taupō.

We’re committed to continue our sponsorship for the No.8 Art Awards next year, and the numbers are certainly looking good. They received 47 entries, up from 38 last year; 2729 people visited the exhibition, up from 2334 last year; and it was well covered by national media.

Our collaboration discussions with the Fieldays team are ongoing and we are certainly looking forward to more great synergies with them in future.