High quality art at sell-out opening

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PROUD: Maysie Willis and her winning sketch, Lucy.
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An image capturing the kindness of a man, gently cradling a tiny lamb, came out a winner at the Ashburton Society of Art 60th annual exhibition opening on Monday night.

Maysie Willis, 24, of Ashburton, drew that image in pencil and gave the drawing the same name as the lamb – Lucy.

It earned her the Rosebank Village Local Award.

Lucy was a real lamb, from her late father David’s childhood.

As she looked through old family photos after his death two years ago, she saw photos of the childhood pet.

‘‘It’s kind of in honour of him and his childhood,’’ she said. ‘‘I’m sure he would have loved to see this being entered.’’

The face of the man holding the lamb in the original photo is out of frame, and it is unknown who he is.

Willis manages The Photo Shop in The Arcade. She was happy and proud to win the award, especially as it was the first time she had entered a competition outside of school. Having drawn since a young child, Willis enjoyed art at school and won a level 2 art award when at Ashburton College.

The winner of the main premier award was Gawie Bosman from Southbridge, for his work Untamed.

Gawie Bosman’s sculpture Untamed won the premier award.

Bosman works as a builder three days and week, and sculpts for two days a week. Untamed was created out of recycled copper and steel, and inspired by standard bred exracing horses, which his partner rehomes.

Judge Jane Malthus said at the sold-out awards evening, at the Ashburton Art Gallery, she had an ‘‘extremely difficult’’ job choosing winners from the high quality of works.

Society president Kay Begg remarked on the milestone 60th anniversary. ‘‘We owe gratitude to early committee members who took a massive leap of faith and organised the first exhibition.’’ The exhibition will run to July 26.

Winners of 2024 Ashburton Society of Arts Awards

RMF Silva Premier Award-Gawie Bosman, Untamed. Braided Rivers Community Trust Water & Nature Award – John Achten, Water’s Edge Lake Dunstan. Rothbury Insurance Brokers, Ashburton, Merit Award – Sara Freiburger, All the Pearls. Rosebank Village Local Award- Maysie Willis, Lucy. NBS Local Merit Award – Steve James, Our Patch. Forest & Bird NZ Flora & Fauna Art Award- Rachel Savage, Duo. Scott Automotive Watercolour Award – Richard Bolton, Mixed Vege. Frame Co Highly Commended Award- Svetlana Orinko, When Apple Falls. Neumanns Tyres Highly Commended Award- Alan Clarence, Wet Early Evening. The Drawing Room Highly Commended Award- Marie Reid-Beadle, Aviation Display. Gordon Harris Award – Jo Loughnan, On the Edge. White Fox & Jones Sculpture Award – Jane Rant, Aging Rocker. Karen McRae, Property Brokers Miniature Award – Catherine Cruickshank, Waterscape 1. Robin Corbett Handcraft Award – Sandra McLintock, Saggar Fired Large Bowl. Ashburton Contracting Ltd Award- Gawie Bosman, Steel Tongue Drum with Lotus Flower Design. Unique Jewellery Local Award – Kelly Rose-Blackburn, Kune Kai. 

Lucy, by Maysie Willis.