NCEA Top Art exhibition launches

Issue: Volume 96, Number 4

Posted: 13 March 2017
Reference #: 1H9d6w

Top Art is an annual touring exhibition of excellent student work.

Along the walls of Te Ara Hihiko, the main foyer and gallery space of Massey University’s College of Creative Arts, hang the 60 folios selected to be part of the NCEA Top Art exhibition.

Top Art is an annual touring exhibition coordinated by NZQA, featuring NCEA Level 3 Visual Art portfolios by students who achieved Excellence in 2016, with several also achieving New Zealand Scholarship.

The exhibition showcases the best of the five fields of NCEA Level 3 Visual Arts; design, painting, photography, printmaking and sculpture. The selected artwork is just a small selection of the exceptional artwork being produced in schools across the country.

The exhibition was launched on Monday 27 February to students, whānau, friends and teachers. As visitors wandered the gallery there was an excited energy as they took in the variety and talent on display. People pointed out their favourites, pointed out their friends’ work, and a few even pointed out paintings and photographs of themselves in the work.

Massey University Head of School for Whiti o Rehua School of Art, Dr Huhana Smith, warmly welcomed everyone and celebrated the work of each student whose art folios had been selected for the tour. She commended students on the recurring environmental perspectives reflected in their boards, a subject that Huhana focuses on in her own work.

Huhana thanked NZQA for hosting the event and giving Massey the opportunity to share in celebrating these talented young people.

NZQA Chief Executive Dr Karen Poutasi echoed Huhana’s thoughts. “You’ll note that several of the biographies and the artworks themselves indicate a strong social conscience and a growing awareness of the impact of humanity on the world around us.”

Students were thrilled to see their work displayed at Massey University.

Mary-Jane Martin, a former Kerikeri High School student who has moved to Wellington to study photography at Massey, attended the launch of the exhibition.

“I feel very proud of the work I have created and it feels good to be able to show others my ideas and thoughts,” she says.

The information from each student that accompanies the folios across the country provides insight into the work, as well as the highs and lows of the creative process.

For Mary-Jane, her favourite part was photographing the old sawmill in Totara North with her grandmother, who is also an artist. She learnt the history of the mill from her as well.

Mary-Jane also enjoyed experimenting with new photographic techniques over the course of the year, and has some advice for students coming through Level 3 photography this year.

“My advice would be to take as many photos as you possibly can, even if you don’t think they will work. Keep thinking about new photoshoot ideas and techniques to try out, and photograph things you enjoy photographing.”

The Top Art exhibition was at Te Ara Hihiko, Massey University, Wellington until 10 March, after which it was divided into two sections that tour either the North or the South Islands, visiting over 30 schools, museums and galleries throughout New Zealand during the course of the year.

For more information and an exhibition schedule visit the NZQA website(external link) 

BY Education Gazette editors
Education Gazette | Tukutuku Kōrero, reporter@edgazette.govt.nz

Posted: 7:51 PM, 13 March 2017

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