Winner of 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium announced

Winner of 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium announced

Following ten days of sculpting, Rory McDougall (Hokitika) was awarded the top prize at the 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium closing ceremony (Sunday 25 November 2018).

His work, entitled Waters of Rotorua depicts a map of the Rotorua region. Made from Taranaki andesite stone, the grooves and concentric rings represent the 13 main bodies of water alongside the rivers and hills of the Rotorua area. People may also associate the sculpture with water ripples, mud pools and topographical maps.

Chosen from the 16 sculptors from all over New Zealand that took part, Rory receives $10,000 prize money and his sculpture will become a permanent part of the Rotorua Sulphur Lake Sculpture Trail.

Rory McDougall was amazed when his name was called and explained how he had never won anything before.

“I have attended all three symposia in Rotorua and I love coming back. I don’t attend symposiums anywhere else. Rotorua landscape is dynamic and classically North Island. The area captivates me and the symposium organiser, Marc Spijkerbosch, is so kind with his time, showing us around the area”, says Mr McDougall.

Master carver Clive Fugall, artist Eugene Kara and sculptor Joe Kemp had the tough job of judging the artworks. The judging criteria included relationship to the theme Ngā Wai o Rotorua – The Waters of Rotorua, originality, technique and suitability for placement in the public arena.

This is the third biennial Rotorua Sculpture Symposium and organiser Rotorua Lakes Council Public Art Advisor, Marc Spijkerbosch, believes it gets better each year.

“The Rotorua Symposium has become an event that enjoys national and international attention. Once again, Rotorua has been extremely fortunate to witness some of the nation’s leading sculptors create a variety of compelling and engaging works – some of which will grace our city and its environs for decades to come”, says Mr Spijkerbosch.

Over the next week the 16 new artworks will be placed around the Sulphur Lake Sculpture Trail, alongside five permanent sculptures from previous symposia, and a new trail will be ready for the public to explore.

Mayor Steve Chadwick attended the awards ceremony and announced the winning sculptor.

“The calibre of entrants this year has raised the bar again. I love the mixing of mediums that is emerging more and more. It has been great to have the symposium take place in the centre of the arts precinct which has allowed me to pop down and watch the sculptures evolve over the week”, says Mayor Steve Chadwick.

For the first time, a new People’s Choice award will be open for public voting from 7 Dec 2018 until 17 Feb 2019. Visit the trail in Government Gardens and then head to the Creative Rotorua Facebook page to vote for your favourite and be in the draw to win a $100 prezzy card.

The winning People’s Choice artist will receive $500 Bunnings voucher which will be announced at the end of the voting period on 18 February 2019.

For more information on the 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium and the Sulphur Lake Sculpture Trail visit www.creativerotorua.org.nz


For further information:

Kathy Nicholls, Communications & Marketing Coordinator,

Arts & Culture Division, Rotorua Lakes Council

P: 07 351 7831 C: 0276 741 898 E: Kathy.nicholls@rotorualc.nz


Image credit: Winner of 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium Rory McDougall with Waters of Rotorua

Image credit: Susan Dinkelacker carves with chainsaw. 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium

Image credit: Jamie Pickernell sands the stone. 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium

Image credit: Bodhi John Vincent marks the stone. 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium

Image credit: Steve Molloy sculpts stone. 2018 Rotorua Sculpture Symposium


2018 Sulphur Lake Sculpture Symposium finalists

Sculptor Name City of Residence Artwork Title
Rory McDougall Hokitika Waters of Rotorua
Trevor Nathan Rotorua Te Awa
Jamie Pickernell Rotorua Grandfather
Rex O’Brien Mt Maunganui Searching for Hatupatu
Anna Korver Taranaki Catchment
Jocelyn Pratt Thames Droplet
Andrew Deadman Auckland Eden
Simone Jacquat Wanganui Rivers and Lakes
Oriah Rapley Taranaki The Gatherers of Stories
Steve Molloy Taranaki Taniwha
Susan Dinkelacker Whangarei Geyser
Trisha Fisk Whangarei Waiwera
Peter Akurangi Rotorua Gathering
Natanahira Te Pona Auckland Just add water
Bodhi John Vincent Kapiti Coast Greed
Claire Sadler Hastings The People’s Boat