WARE exchange programme

In the exchange facet of the Wellington Asia Residency Exchange (WARE) programme, an artist from Wellington goes to China to develop a project.

Each year, the Council – in conversation with representatives from the arts sector – select a Wellington-based artist to take part in a residency in one of our Chinese Sister Cities, Beijing or Xiamen.

The residency runs for three months, from September to November. Artists are expected to research and develop new work for presentation while there or when back home in Aotearoa.

The chosen artist receives support throughout their residency, including return flights, a daily allowance for living costs, exhibition materials, self-contained accommodation and a studio space to work.

Past residents

Artist Emily Hartley-Skudder in her studio.
Emily Hartley-Skudder, self portrait in studio, 2018

2018 – Emily Hartley-Skudder, installation artist

Emily Hartley-Skudder was selected as the 2018 recipient of the WARE exchange programme to Xiamen, South China. She stayed at the Chinese European Arts Centre (CEAC) in the heart of Xiamen for three months.

Emily gained a Bachelor of Fine Arts (First Class Honours) from the University of Canterbury in 2012 and has since gone on to exhibit widely in group and solo shows across New Zealand.

Emily was selected based on the strength of her application and practice to date. She proposed a thoughtful and intriguing series of site specific projects that demonstrated a high degree of attention to detail and of understanding of the context, that is Xiamen – the city became her home for three months.

While in Xiamen Emily developed a new body of work, Pussy Bow, that responded directly to her experiences while resident. This work was exhibited at CEAC Gallery in Xiamen and iterations will be exhibited during 2020 in Wellington. Other projects heavily influenced by her time in China have been exhibited this year (2019) at Gus Fisher Gallery, Auckland and Jonathan Smart Gallery, Christchurch. Emily's original proposed project for WARE, Fancy Foods, which involved commissioning painters in Xiamen to reproduce her photographs, is at the Suter Art Gallery in Nelson from 19 October to 9 February, 2020.

Hartley-Skudder has written various articles about her residency experiences, including an essay entitled The Power of the Pussy-Bow: Fighting back against rape art.

Necklace made of brass and stirling silver by artist Moniek Schrijer.
Windows, necklace made of brass and stirling silver, by artist Moniek Schrijer

2017 – Moniek Schrijer, jewellery artist

Moniek worked towards creating a new body of work including sculpture and art jewellery pieces crafted from locally sourced materials. She exhibited this work at the Chinese European Arts Centre (CEAC) Gallery in Xiamen; the title of the exhibition was Diamonds and Rust. Schrijer explored notions and elements of memory, digital storage ownership, cryptocurrency and the ancient coin form, pattern, packaging, the replica and the mass produced.

Since completing a Bachelor of Applied Arts and a Post-Graduate Diploma in Jewellery and Printmaking at Whitireia, Schrijer has been the recipient of numerous awards and residencies. Her most notable accolades include the 2016 Herbert Hofmann Preis and the 2015 Françoise van den Bosch artist in residence in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. Schrijer has exhibited widely in group and solo exhibitions; her work is in the collection of Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa and The Dowse Art Museum.

Artwork installation by Daniel Beban.
Daniel Beban, PVC Sheng, sound installation

2016 – Daniel Beban, sound and installation artist

Daniel Beban had a busy 3 months in Beijing working on installations, recordings and collaborative, cross cultural projects. He performed in the city, played in Chengdu at the Nu Art Festival and constructed works for the open studio sessions at Red Gate including a sculptural sound piece made from metal bowls and plastic bottles that drip water slowly into the bowls, producing gong-like sounds. Beban found electrical components to make contact microphones, so the sound comes out of loudspeakers. Beban also curated a series of shows at an experimental music venue in Beijing called Fruity Space during October and November. The series was a collaboration with Wellington’s Pyramid Club.

Still of a girl with a blue and organge background from The Only Girl in the World by artist Erica Sklenars.
The Only Girl in the World by Erica Sklenars

2015 – Erica Sklenars, artist

Erica Sklenars prepared for her WARE application by researching Beijing's contemporary art community.

When applying, she immersed herself in the idea of being in China's capital city. She scouted out Beijing-based artists of interest and found project spaces where she might show work.

Erica is working towards developing an ongoing series of live improvised collaborations. She is working with feminist and sound artists as a way to share and explore cultural ideas and issues, and develop bonds and friendships. This will result in the production of an audio visual installation piece.

There will be an exhibition of her work in Beijing and Wellington.

2014 – Jade Townsend, multimedia artist

Jade Townsend had an inspiring and productive time in China.

She was offered a show at the Comme Des Garcon concept store in Sanlitun, called I.T Beijing Market.

Townsend was also invited to take part in the inaugural exhibition of Imagine Asia, which opened at PATAKA Art + Museum in 2015.

2013 – John Lake, photographer

John Lake produced Up the Punks Beijing, looking at the punk music culture in Beijing.

John installed an exhibition of his work at Black Coffee in Newtown and published 'Up the Punks Zine #1: China syndrome'.

The zine featured stories from his 3-month residency in Beijing with text in Mandarin and English.

Colourful patters displayed on screens in a dark room.
Artwork by Benjamin Buchanan

2012 – Benjamin Buchanan, artist

Benjamin Buchanan's abstract installations came from research into vinyl and other materials.

On his return, he gave a talk at City Gallery Wellington about his experiences. He also exhibited his new work at Motel Bar.