Foundation announces
2017 arts grants recipients

An independent performing arts centre, a contemporary gallery in West Auckland and an award-winning theatre director are among this year’s recipients of the Asia New Zealand Foundation arts grants.
Indian Ink

Toi Whakaari graduate Kalyani Nagarajan (pictured) has received a grant to assist with the production of her one-woman-play Mrs K's Party

Each year, the Foundation assists selected New Zealand artists and arts organisations to undertake Asia-related  projects that help New Zealand audiences gain a better understanding of the vibrant contemporary art scenes in the Asia-Pacific region. “We want Asian voices to be part of the mainstream,” says Foundation executive director Simon Draper.

“At the same time, we want to help New Zealand artists to thrive in the Asian region by building their networks and working collaboratively with their Asian counterparts,” Mr Draper says.

This year’s recipients are:

  • Q Theatre
  • Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery
  • Auckland University video artist Jim Speers
  • Indian Ink Theatre Company
  • Massey University – Wellington
  • Auckland Theatre Company
  • New Zealand Festival
  • Black Pearl Ltd
  • Theatre director and playwright Peter Wilson
  • Indo-Fijian textile artist Quishile Charan
  • Wellington-based moving image artist Sonya Lacey.

The grant for Q Theatre will assist the Auckland independent performing arts centre to host South Korea hip hop pioneer MC Meta and jazz musician Chulhoon Lee, who will be featured in a series of events including lectures, workshops and a public performance.

Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery in West Auckland received the grant for its Asia Pacific Century: Talkfest happening this month (September) which will highlight New Zealand's evolving national identity.

Auckland University video artist Jim Speers’ grant will help in producing a bilingual Let the Water Flow catalogue combining essays and visual material documenting artwork and films on contemporary Chinese culture made by the collective Field Recordings between 2016-2017.

The grant for Indian Ink Theatre Company will help in the staging of its new play Mrs K's Party, featuring recent Indian Toi Whakaari graduate Kalyani Nagarajan, at TAPAC in December 2017 to be followed by a regional tour in 2018.

Massey University in Wellington received the grant for the production of the work by Japanese artist Yuka Oyama, who will be artist in residence from October 2017 to January 2018 at Te Whare Hera international artist residency run by Massey University School of Art and Wellington City Council.

The grant for the Auckland Theatre Company will assist in bringing a version of the Diwali story Light v Dark -- The Adventures of Rama into primary and intermediate schools in October 2017 as part of the ATC Creative Learning's Mythmaker programme.

New Zealand Festival will use its grant to bring renowned Singaporean comics artist, painter and illustrator Sonny Liew to Wellington for Writers Week in March 2018.

The grant for Moana and the Tribe producer and promoter Black Pearl Ltd will help to identify and record a Taiwanese guest artist for the ONO album project, which will feature original songs by six indigenous female artists from different countries.

Award-winning theatre director and playwright Peter Wilson’s grant will support his collaboration with Korea's Tuida Performance Group for a new work for small children based on the Matariki/Pleiades star cluster, to be performed in Korea and New Zealand.

Indo-Fijian textile artist Quishile Charan will use her grant to undertake a textile residency at D.I.S.C the Art in Odisha, India, allowing her to incorporate traditional skills in her practice, which focuses on indentured labour and post-colonial impacts on the Indo-Fijian community.

The grant for Arcade NZ Live Art Trust will help bring Korean artists Jin Young Park and Hye Jun Shin to Wellington to continue their collaboration with Australian physical theatre company Stalker Theatre on "Pixel Mountain" — a large-scale outdoor performance and audio visual installation presented on the wall of Te Papa as one of the highlights of the 2018 NZ Arts Festival.

Finally, the grant for Wellington-based moving image artist Sonya Lacey will assist in shooting a film entitled How to Get From One to Two in Cambodia during her artist residency at the invitation of NTU Centre for Contemporary Art in Singapore in September and October 2017.

Arts grants are part of the Foundation’s culture programme, which also supports artist residencies in Asia and network-building tours for New Zealand curators and performing arts specialists.

For more information about the Foundation’s arts grants, contact