2021 Arts Foundation Springboard recipient, multi-disciplinary artist Hohua Ropate Kurene. Photo / Supplied

Meet The Arts Foundation's Seven Springboard Recipients For 2021

Now in its second year, seven out of 350 candidates have been announced — including a mentor and mentee pairing close to home

Today we announce the seven lucky recipients of the Arts Foundation Te Tumu Toi 2021 Springboard initiative — now only in its sophomore year. 

Launched last year at a time where many in the creative industries were finding new ways to survive Covid-19 limitations, both in terms of income and creative hurdles, the initiative is an example of its commitment to supporting the next generation of talent as the arts sector adapts to the changing times. 

Aimed at providing financial, mentoring and a resource support system to help recipients' growth and development in their practice, the Springboard award gives our next generation of artists the opportunity to focus on a full-time career in the arts and to nurture their chosen practice.

The Springboard called for nominations in November 2020, and an independent selection panel gathered in late February of this year to review the 350 submissions received. 

The selection panel, chaired by Arts Foundation arts trustee and jeweller Warwick Freeman, included:

– Nigel Borell (Māori arts curator)

– Briar Grace-Smith (screenplay writer and actor)

– Ralph Buck (professor of dance studies, University of Auckland)

– Philip Clarke (chair of the Blumhardt Foundation, arts patron and trustee of the New Zealand Fashion Museum)

– Karen Grylls (associate professor in choral conducting at the University of Auckland)

– Tusiata Avia (poet, performer and children's book writer)

– Steph Walker (head of programming, Auckland Arts Festival)

The seven awardees have been selected at a formative stage of their careers, showcasing an outstanding potential in a variety of arts disciplines.

Along with a $15,000 gift, each recipient has been matched carefully to a senior artist mentor from the Arts Foundation alumni of Laureates, Icons, New Generation, residency or Fellowship recipients. Each mentor receives $5000 for their time and support. 

Where an artist wasn’t able to be matched within the Arts Foundation artist alumni, they looked externally for the perfect fit.

The 2021 Arts Foundation Springboard duos are: 

Cora-Allan Wickliffe and Shane Cotton. Photos / Supplied

Cora-Allan Wickliffe (visual artist – Hiapo) mentored by 2008 Arts Foundation Laureate Shane Cotton ONZM (visual artist)

Cian Parker and Briar Grace Smith. Photos / Supplied

Cian Parker (writer and performer) mentored by 2000 Arts Foundation Laureate Briar Grace Smith ONZM (writer, actor and director)

Ta’alili – Aloalii Tapu and Tori Manley-Tapu. Photos / Supplied

Ta’alili – Aloalii Tapu and Tori Manley-Tapu (dancers and choreography) mentored by 2011 Arts Foundation Laureate Lemi Ponifasio (theatre director, choreographer, multi-disciplinary artist)

Reuben Jelleyman and Ross Harris. Photos / Supplied

Reuben Jelleyman (composer) mentored by 2014 Arts Foundation Laureate Ross Harris (composer)

Maisie Chilton and Julia Morison. Photos / Supplied

Maisie Chilton (visual artist, poet) mentored by 2005 Arts Foundation Laureate Julia Morison ONZM (visual artist)

Hohua Ropate Kurene and Dan Ahwa. Photos / Supplied

Hōhua Ropate Kurene (multi-disciplinary artist) mentored by Dan Ahwa (creative director, Viva Magazine, NZ Herald and New Zealand Fashion Museum trustee)

Larsen Winiata Tito-Taylor and Riki Gooch. Photos / Supplied

Larsen Winiata Tito-Taylor (multi-disciplinary artist) mentored by Riki Gooch (drummer, composer)

The award is especially significant as it pairs multi-disciplinary artist and Viva contributor Hōhua Ropate Kurene with his chosen mentor, Viva's own creative director Dan Ahwa. 

“It is a great honour to be one of the recipients of this year’s Springboard awards. To have my work not only recognised but also supported in this very special way is a true blessing," says Hōhua.

"With this opportunity, I look forward to navigating my experiences within the arts with a greater sense of ease and purpose. I am proud of my accomplishments thus far and I am very grateful to my Aiga and Tuaā — the threads and ties that have safely guided me here. This opportunity has arrived in such a timely way and is received with much gratitude.

"To share this all with my mentor, tuakana and dear friend Dan Ahwa, makes this experience all the more sweeter.”

To be considered for the Springboard programme, potential candidates must display the following criteria:

 Potential to develop a sustainable career and practise in the arts

 The award must have major impact on the artist to carry out working as an artist for a year

 The artist could be in their final year of formal education ready to develop a practice after completion or have developed a practice independent of any formal teaching institution.

 They will show potential to develop their careers either as independent artists or within a creative community

 The artist needs to show commitment and intent for a career

 The artist must be endorsed by a nominator (who will act as referee if need be)

 Attention will be given to diversity of gender, regional location and representation of a variety of artistic disciplines

 The artist must be a permanent resident of Aotearoa

 The artist must be available to promote Springboard and the Arts Foundation. At least one of the artists selected has to be a visual artist (this is a request by funder, the Edgar Family)

The Arts Foundation Springboard packages have been funded thanks to the generous support of the Edgar Family, the Todd Trust, Abby McCormick O’Neil and D. Carroll Joynes, The Leighs Family, and some generous Arts Foundation Te Tumu Toi supporters.

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