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2015 Fieldays No. 8 Wire National Art Award

5 June 2015 - 29 June 2015

Held annually around the Fieldays event, the Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award challenges artists to create artworks using predominantly No.8 Wire. The awards have become a highlight on the national art calendar, offering artists the opportunity to turn their hand to something unique while pushing the physical and conceptual boundaries of the iconic Kiwi agricultural product.

Waikato-based kinetic sculptor Tony Nicholls judged the Fieldays No.8 Wire National Art Award this year. Read the award ceremony media release here.

2015 Winner - Eye Sight, Rebecca Rose

2ndRusty Jandals – Gone for a Swim, Dagmar Elliot

3rdFenced In & Out, Akky van der Velde

President’s Choice – Our Nation's Pride, Katrina Jury



Dagmar Elliot – Te Awamutu

Elwyn Stone and Reiner Linderman – Hamilton

Nicholas Elliot – Te Awamutu

Asaki Kajima Loughnan – Napier

Fiona Clarke – Taranaki

Ann Byford – Taupiri

Ricks Terstappen – Hastings

Tim Elliot – Auckland

Katrina Jury – Hamilton

Robert Caig – Wellington

Kate McLean – Auckland

Akky van der Velde – Leeston

Jane Pouls and Dave Sole – Hamilton

Bev Goodwin and Jeff Thomson – Auckland

Rebecca Rose – Auckland


2015 Judge for No.8 Wire National Art Award

Tony Nicholls

Born in New Plymouth, 1960, Tony Nicholls has resided in Hamilton since the early 1990s, where he lives with his wife and two children. Nicholls has worked at Wintec for the last 19 years, in the school of Media Arts.

At 14 he won a regional painting competition but after trying conceptual art and failing Fine Art Prelim, was told by a teacher to give up his dream of pursuing an art education. Nicholls' father, an accomplished landscape artist, encouraged him to get a paying job and he consequently went to teachers' college only to end up at an art school.

In 1984, Nicholls graduated from the Otago School of Art majoring in sculpture. He then completed a BFA with first class honours in 2006 and an MFA with distinction at Wintec two years later.

Nicholls' earlier work was largely sheet metal sculpture and low relief works, where surface treatment and natural colouring were as important as the form. He also started making acoustic guitars at this time.

The challenge of detailed work and problem solving has always interested Nicholls and his later kinetic sound sculptures provide many opportunities for this. Some of these works took six months to complete. The works bring together sound tracts produced on a computer, amplifiers, speakers, the mechanisms connected to these, articulated components and their support structures.

Tony Nicholls' studio is overflowing with dozens of computers, amplifiers, countless collections of raw materials including Kevlar, carbon fibre, brass, steel, timber, plastic, polystyrene, salvaged treasures, paint and an excessive array of equipment to machine, construct and fettle the sculptures into shape. Not to mention the four Bambina cars awaiting restoration.

The Greek term aletheia (un-concealment of truth) has been a significant theme of his work, where an existing reality which may not be evident is disclosed. "This is not limited to or necessarily centred on intellectual understanding or correctness but also and importantly on the experiential," he says.

Image: 2015 Winner, Eye Sight, Rebecca Rose

No.8Wire BW Positive2




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