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New home for artwork . . .  Kaiapoi artist Paul Smith and his painting, As Time Goes By, at last year’s Kaiapoi Art Expo. The painting was given to Waimakariri Mayor Dan Gordon, who stepped as Waimakariri Arts Trust chairperson.

By DAVID HILL

Entries have been “flooding in” for the annual Kaiapoi Art Expo.

With entries closing on Friday, May 20, Waimakariri Arts Trust chairperson Jackie Watson says interest has been strong from both within the district and outside.

This year’s Kaiapoi Art Expo will be held at the Kaiapoi Club from July 15 to 17.

“Entries flooded in as soon as the first announcement went out,” she says.

“There has been interest from outside of Waimakariri, but we give first preference to artists from in the district.”

While there will be no guest artist this year, expo organisers are looking to support the Waimakariri Public Arts Trust in its bid to get some more artworks, and particularly sculptures, around the district.

There will be some sculptures on display at the expo and the Waimakariri Arts Trust has commissioned a sculpture from Amberley artist Raymond Herber, with some of the proceeds from last year’s expo.

Jackie also chairs the Waimakariri Public Arts Trust, which hosted a “sip & sculpt” event in Ohoka earlier in the year to promote the work of the trust and support local sculptors.

Budding artists are encouraged to come along to the expo on Saturday for the “have a go” sessions and the organising committee is on the lookout for local artists to come along and demonstrate their talents.

“We would like to hear from people we haven’t had before,” Jackie says.

“It’s very popular. It’s not just the children, as we get lots of adults who get involved.

“Last year we had a great range of different art disciplines, so anyone who would like to come and demonstrate, please get in contact.”

The “have a go” sessions are held downstairs at the Kaiapoi Club and free coffee is provided for the demonstrating artists.

“We get very positive feedback and you never know what it might lead to.”

Jackie says there has been good support from local businesses and funders, who all see the event as a positive for the district.

Once again the Kaiapoi Art Expo will be supported by the Blackwells Fire and Ice, with the ice sculpting on Saturday afternoon and the market in the evening.

The All Together Kaiapoi “light up Kaiapoi” lanterns will be also be glowing for the week leading up to the expo.