Becky Donovan wins IHC Art Awards 2018

Media release

27 July 2018

An intricately detailed drawing by Dunedin artist Becky Donovan has won the 2018 IHC Art Awards and $5000.

Becky’s piece, Cat, after Barry Cleavin, is a tribute to Christchurch-based printmaker Barry Cleavin. She used graphite to copy a Barry Cleavin image, and then experimented with erasing what she’d done. Her intricately detailed stalking cat has its skeleton visible in some places.

This is not the first time that Becky’s work has been featured as a finalist in the IHC Art Awards. Her drawing, Fashion Models, came second in 2016.

Becky works at the IDEA Services Art Space studio in Dunedin. Art Space hosts between 30 and 35 artists with an intellectual disability. Over recent years, a number of Art Space artists have been successful in the national IHC Art Awards – reaching the finals and winning top prizes.

Second prize of $2000 went to Amanda Brennan and third prize of $1000 was won by Colleen Bauer. For the third year in a row the top three prizes went to an all-female line-up of artists.

There were 428 entries in this year’s Awards. At the gala event Art Awards Ambassador Dame Denise L’Estrange-Corbet noted this resulted in a broad range of mediums. “As well as the sheer volume of artwork, I am particularly impressed by the wide variety of media and themes, showcasing the versatility and scope from the people here in this room.”

The top three prize-winners were picked out of 30 finalists nationwide and announced at Shed 6 in Wellington on Thursday 26 July. The finalists’ work was auctioned at the event, with all proceeds from the sales going solely to the artists.


2018 IHC Art Award Judges


Jae Kang

Jae Kang is a South Korean-born artist based in New Zealand, known primarily for her large scale gallery and outdoor public installations. Jae's ethos is socially engaged, producing generous, layered works accessible to the general public. She also displays an interest in community participation, often developing pieces people can touch and with public programmes an integral component of the work. She has a substantial history producing outdoor public sculpture and regularly exhibits two dimensional drawings in a range of media including pencil, ink and adhesive tape.

Currently, Jae is exhibiting a Dansaekwha drawing installation Wave of breath at Tauranga Art gallery and an interactive installation show Knot Tough for children and disabled people at New Zealand's Maritime museum. She has also recently been appointed for an outdoor sculpture show in Canberra 2018 and Sculpture on the Gulf 2019.


Tim Walker

Tim Walker is an Auckland-based arts and culture consultant. After three decades in the art gallery sector (as fine arts curator at Waikato Museum, senior art curator at National Art Gallery/Te Papa and director at The Dowse) he set up his own company and now works with arts organisations, government departments, local government, iwi and tourism operators throughout New Zealand.


Sarah Wilkins

Sarah Wilkins is a visual artist who works globally for the publishing, advertising and design worlds. She has lived on and off in Paris for more than 12 years. Her clients include the L.A. Times, Barnes & Noble, Time Magazine, UNESCO and United Airlines. Her work has been awarded by Communication Arts, American Illustration, The Society of Illustrators, The World Illustration Awards and the Taipei International Book Exhibition.

In New Zealand she was awarded the Russell Clark Medal for illustration and has illustrated 5 children’s books to date. Her latest book 'The Longest Breakfast' written by Jenny Bornholdt is one of the Storylines Notable Books of 2018.


For more information and/or images, please contact:

Maia Renner

Communications Advisor

027 449 9047

2018 winners (from left) Colleen Bauer, Becky Donovan and Amanda Brennan.