National art competition to get more youngsters to Waitangi

Luke Parker
National art competition to get more youngsters to Waitangi

A nationwide student art competition has been launched as part of an initiative aimed at having every child visit Waitangi before they leave school to better understand New Zealand’s heritage.

Our Nation’s Children – an initiative of the Waitangi National Trust and supported by Westpac – started in 2013 with the goal of encouraging more visitors to the historic location. 

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As part of its campaign for 2016, Our Nation’s Children is encouraging Year 9 and 10 students from around the country to create art that responds to the ongoing significance of Waitangi.

The three best entries will be showcased at the newly opened Museum of Waitangi and will win a school trip (up to $10,000 per school) to Waitangi and the Bay of Islands.

The Waitangi National Trust has also officially introduced the Bay of Islands Education Network, a new service for schools to organise class trips to the Bay of Islands.

Both initiatives were officially launched by the Governor-General, Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae, at Government House in Auckland.

Waitangi National Trust CEO, Greg McManus, said the project is all about inspiring and educating the next generation of New Zealanders to know and understand the history of the birthplace of New Zealand, and encourage more people to visit.

“It would be great if, through this initiative, we are able to encourage more schools to consider visiting Waitangi and the Bay of Islands as part of the school curriculum or even to make it a destination for their annual school camp,” he said.

Westpac Director of Corporate Affairs Sue Foley said Waitangi is very precious to the history of New Zealand and it’s important for young Kiwis to stay connected to that history.

“We're proud to support the Waitangi National Trust and their great work to enable more children to experience the Treaty Grounds and local area first hand,” she said.

Multi-disciplinary artist and Venice Biennale representative Lisa Reihana is one of the official judges for the art competition.

“My work draws inspiration from Aotearoa, Pacific histories, and colonial encounters,” she said. “This competition is important because through a creative investigation of our shared recent past we understand humanity better."

Through the support of Westpac, the three best artworks will each win a school trip valued at $10,000 to visit Waitangi and the Bay of Islands. The School trip itinerary will be planned and booked by the Bay of Islands Education Network.



About Our Nation’s Children National Art Competition

Our Nation’s Children Art Competition is aimed at Year 9 and 10 students and will be held during the second term of 2016.

The competition theme is: “What does the Treaty of Waitangi mean to you?”

Entries can be created in the following visual media: paint, pencil, ink, collage, charcoal, pastel, photographic, and digital media.

The prize include three nights’ accommodation for one class from each of the winning schools, all meals, an educational experience at the Waitangi Treaty Grounds and the Waitangi Museum and an itinerary planned and booked by the Bay of Islands Education Network.

Activities may include a visit to the Kauri Museum, Pompallier Mission, Russell Museum, Kerikeri Mission Station, tall ship sailing, a waka trip, dolphin swimming and kayaking.

Entries for ‘Our Nation’s Children Art Competition’ will open on 2 May 2016 and close on 1 July 2016.

Entrants will be invited to submit photos or scans of the artwork, with shortlisted finalists invited to submit the original artwork for consideration by the judging panel. Full terms and conditions will be available from 2 May 2016.

For more information or to register for the competition, please visit Our Nation’s Children.

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