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Welcome to the NZ Art Guild blog - here you will find the news updates, links to members art, information about art exhibitions and events, art challenge winners etc.

For full information about the NZ Art Guild, its services and to become a member go to NZ Art Guild

Friday, 23 December 2011

Thank you and good bye.

Today is the end of an era. The NZ Art Guild will be closing the doors for good. Thank you to all of you who have taken the time to message us your kind words and support, we are sincerely grateful. We have wonderful memories of the past 7 & 1/2 years which will never be forgotten.

Here is a small selection of the hundreds of messages we have received, please feel free to add your own comments and thoughts on this blog.

It has to be acknowledged the tremendous effort that has been made by a few individuals to maintain the living breathing organism that has been the NZ Art Guild. It is important to note that although it is now closing, the long list of achievements remain as evidence of the existence of this extraordinary phenomenon. This is a time to celebrate the work of all the participants, founders, administrators, and artists alike, and to reflect on the catalogue of exciting and happy events and initiatives that we and New Zealand have enjoyed. I wish everybody well in the future, hearty thanks for your contribution, and the fellowship of artists is all the healthier in New Zealand for the existence of the NZ Art Guild. It will live on with the legacy it leaves us today. – R.E

I would just like to thank everyone involved in the NZ Art Guild for their help and support and wish them all a Very Merry Christmas and a Safe and Happy New Year. Good luck to you all with whatever you undertake in 2012 - L.B

Deepest Regrets that you are unable to continue with your excellent work and support for artists and Best Wishes to you all for the Future - M.B

The Guild has offered much to many. It’s been a stepping stone and a support network, it’s offered opportunities and camaraderie, it’s enabled creativity to flourish and thrive. That is all good. I’ve enjoyed my association with you and the Guild and the others I’ve met through it. Those links will continue, no matter which direction I head in life, so thanks for that. Thanks for that. – S.B

I`m so sorry about the art guild ending, and sooo well done in everything you have done. I am absolutely in awe of the commitment, and dedication you have shown in representing us- the humble artists!! To you, AND all your helpers- a huge, huge thank you!! :) – T.D

Annual Members Exhibition 2011

Thank you for the obvious love and commitment you have given to NZ Art Guild, and its artists whom you have nurtured and supported. Go well and best wishes for whatever will be your next venture. – E.S

I have been a member of NZ Art Guild for about 18 months and have been always amazed at how much you do. I have always wondered how NZ Art Guild was able to sustain itself and your enthusiasm. Whilst this is now a new beginning for you I felt compelled to write this little note to compliment you on all you have achieved and the grace with which you are working through this reality. My sincere compliments and good luck for the future – M.C
As it says in the Sound of Music, "When the Lord closes a door, somewhere He opens a window"..... Everyone who has been associated with you through the NZ Art Guild will always be able to carry with them your kind thoughts, encouragement and appreciation and I am sure that they will never forget you – S.W

I am so so sorry this has happened Sophia. What you built and the work you did was incredibly supportive of the arts community. It must have been such a hard decision to make. Biggest hugs – B.V.G

Soph you're a bloody legend! The NZ Art guild has helped so many people and raised so much funds for charities all throughout the country. Thanks for all your support with many fundraising events. – N.F

Small Packages Exhibition 2010

Thank you Sophia Elise, Tanya Dann, Rachael Inch ,Rochelle May, and all the others who've helped me with encouragement, opportunities, exhibitions, fun etc – J.B

I am so sad to read that the guild will close. I have kept up-to-date with the site readings and emails. It was the only one of its kind in NZ that I felt had great artistic direction and a true art fellowship. – B.O.G

I'm speechless...I'm so sorry about this news. I will never forget that NZ Art Guild, through your actions and the connection that you made on my work on the Whitianga Art Centre facebook page, where the first push to move on and play more seriously with art. Thank you! – M. G

I read with sorrow your decision to close the Art Guild. I do admire your tenacity and vision and congratulate you for managing to continue it for so long. I am also pretty sure that whatever you attempt will be a wonderful success and so I pray for the very best to come forth from you in all your future endeavours. Blessings and love – L.I

I am really sorry to hear the news. I thank you for all your hard work and encouragement you have given NZ artists. I would have never had a go at things like collaborative art, if I had not seen the guilds pieces. And you have all been wonderful workers for the various charities. A great loss. Thanks for all the suggestions to, great stuff. Wish you and the team all the best for your future ventures and hope I do not lose touch with the folk I have met via the Guild. – G.P

Pocket Rockets Exhibition 2010

Thank you for what you have done and sorry to see the end of NZ Art Guild. Good luck for the future – A.W

Thanks for your wonderful efforts over the years. Sorry to see you go. – S.J

Thank-you for everything you have done for artists all over New Zealand – C.I

Heartbreaking – such an awesome organization – is there no way that it can continue but in different format somehow? Your work has been outstanding – it has always been an extreme pleasure to know you.- L.T

Many thanks for all the support you have given me over the past years. Have made a few new contacts and had a few sales. Much appreciated and sad to see you go, as you are, but no doubt you will all appear somewhere else in the not too distant future. – B.B

Members entries to various Art Challenges:
RifRaf - Tomato, Anni Morris - Under Southern Skies (inspired by Marilynn Webb), Paulette Shepherd - Tui amoungst Kaka Beak
Dear Sophia, what a shame that we will no longer have you and NZ Art Guild. Thank you for everything – S.S

Wow – end of an era! Congratulations on pulling all the functions and activities together as you have done. – J.P

I am so sorry to hear that this has had to happen. You have done such a wonderful job over the past few years, so thank you so much for the time and effort you have put into the Art Guild for all of us. Best of luck for the future – J.B

What a pity. This is actually a major blow to the Arts in New Zealand. Sophia, thanks to you and your team for all the hard work you have put in to make it what it was up to now. A BIG hole has been left. – D.C

End of an era Sophia, but you certainly made that era a fabulous one albeit a hard one which you put your heart and soul into. What a journey for you and all involved, you deserve a medal Sophia. Now that you've spent so many years looking after others it's time to look after you – J.C

Winners of the 2008 NZ Art Guild Art Awards
 1st Elspeth Batt - Celebration of the Uniqueness of Us, 2nd Kelly Hartley - Oritetanga, 3rd Sheryl O'Gorman - Cause and Effect

What a decision to have to make after so much passion and hard work over the years. You gave your all to that organisation – Sophia you deserve a medal for all that you did for the community and artists. You have always been an inspiration to me and you remain so. – V.H

You may not have realised that, but you were there for us at a time we needed it. Thank you! We very much hope we can be long-term friends, by email or snail mail or - best - face to face. Bet there will be lots of people saying that. – L.C

I'm so sorry for this closure. I really loved *everything* you were doing for the New Zealand artists. Keep fighting the good fight and stay strong, wherever you go with your next adventure – S.S

I was shocked and so sorry to hear the news about the NZ Art Guild permanently closing, after all the work you have put into it. When I came to NZ from the UK, I thought it was a great organisation and so well run - I will definitely feel the loss. I would like to express my thanks to you, for all you have done, and wish you well in your next ventures. I hope our paths cross again in the future. – C.F

This is very shocking and sad news for me. Artists like me are going to miss a good, passionate, determined and eventful organisation. I wish good luck to your future plans and I would like to support as much I can. always look forward to your services for my future years. – S.U

South Island Members Exhibition 2008

It is a huge loss to NZ artists. You have done a fantastic job. All the best for the future – K.G

Thank you for everything you have done and for the inspiration! Ciao bella – M.G

You did a wonderful job Sophia! And you still inspire me today.- C.D

So sorry to hear of the closing but thank you for providing the most wonderful Guild for all the time you have Sophia and thanks to those who supported you. – W.M

Well you can give yourself a huge pat on the back for the job you have done, and the artists you have encouraged & nurtured, to all the good times & bad....well Done – P.D

Christmas Decorations dontated to Starship Hospital 2008 by Tanya Dann, Helen Sherrock and Shelly van Soest

VERY sad sad news indeed and I'm sure, in fact, I know you will not have made the decision lightly at all. I'm surprised you didn't get funding as you've grown this organisation so much and I know there will be a lot of very shocked people out there. Please take care - and keep in touch – M.D

Though I haven't been a member I have enjoyed reading the posts and little bits of participation here and there. Kia Kaha! Arohanui – N.A

Very sad to hear that the art guild is coming to an end - Personally I would like to thank you for all the work and time you have put in over the years. You and those who surrounded you through the journey have been a true asset to artists and those like minded. It is such a pity that the guild will be ending as I thought it so important for creatives to have a platform and social collective. – C.T

I am very saddened by the closure of NZ Art Guild and unable to find words to describe the pain. Although I have been a member for a short period of time, once I read the email, It is very unfortunate that NZ Art Guild is financially not a sustainable organisation and the Charities Commission declined charity status with all your efforts. Personally, it's been great working with you and Tanya. I very much appreciate the great opportunity to share the art and ideas. – N

I just wanted to say that I think you have both (plus all the others of course!!) have done a wonderful job and you along with the guild will be sorely missed! Hopefully we will still cross paths at some stage in the future. NZ is quite small – K.B

Members entries to various Art Challenges:
Jane Bold - Never say goodbye, Cath Sheard - My husband, My hero, Tash Shackleton - Where the wild things were

Thank you for helping to make my years with the Guild so pleasant and rewarding! – R. E

I am sad that the Guild is closing. I have been very happy to participate with the Guild over the past years and shall miss your cheerfulness and help whenever I have needed it. – J.S

Thank you for your kind wishes and all the tremendous effort that has gone into such a wonderful cause for artists, I am saddened to hear it has come to an end. Wishing you all success in your futures – J.C

Big thanks for all your support NZAG!...I will miss you...alofa tele/love always...A.C

Thanks for all the good service ladies, - R.S

Entries to Members Artswap 2010
Jo Mallinger - Applelicious, Melissa Muirhead - The Impermanence of form, Sophia Elise - Captured

Thank You Sophia and co for doing such a great job for so long. You will be missed, and this organization will be missed. I understand how hard it is keeping a non-profit org. together!. – M.M

Best wishes to you all. May the future hold way more than you had ever dreamed! Take care – E.L

Best wishes with future art inspired endeavours you all involve yourselves with. Well done for achieving what you have (I guess we have too) thus far. I really enjoyed being part of the collaborative piece even though I didn't meet anyone it's a nice energy that was created and each year the combined pieces were wonderful. – M.A

Good luck for the future Sophia and Team - You have all done a grand job – C.W

So sorry to hear this Sophia. You worked so hard on this and for this. – L.A Did not have a lot of involvement but it was always good to keep up with what was going on. – J.C

Pocket Rockets Exhibition 2011

I know that you will be back, God is good all the time. God Bless! – F.R Thank you. You have done a fabulous job for us artists and we wish you well. Thank you Sophia personally for all the support you have given me as I re-entered the public domain with my work.. – V.B

Thanks for your services for artists in the part of years. Well done! Enjoy you holiday and keep in touch next year. May God blessing you all! – F.H

I'm really sorry to hear this Sophia. You have given so much to the Guild and it's so unfortunate that the application to the Charities Commission was turned down. I've made some great friendships through the Guild and hope we will be able to continue to communicate. Thanks again for a job very well done, - K.L

I'm sorry to hear you are closing the NZ Art Guild as it seems to have had a huge influence on NZ art, artists and done worthwhile charity work over the time you have been operating. All the best for your new venture and direction. – M.A

We are sorry to learn that the NZ Art Guild has been declined charitable status and that you will need to close. I just want to express thanks for help you have given to the NZ Portrait Gallery. It has been much appreciated. – NZ Portrait Gallery many thanks for what you have done. Y.M

Kumeu Art in the Garden 2011

What very sad news!! Might I say how grateful I have been for this wonderful vehicle you created, and how sorry I am that yet another wonderful platform falls under the 'money' axe. I am sure I speak for many when I congratulate you on running such a fabulous venture and how appreciative we are for all those hours and the money you have put in. So sorry that bureaucratic BS got in the way. NZ only seems to have a head for sport ventures. Which sucks. Anyway, my thanks for everything you have done over the years for NZ artists. Heartfelt blessings to you both, - A.W

Oh - such a shame. Thanks Sophia for putting your heart and soul into this for so long – K.L

I was sad to hear about the closing of NZ Art Guild. Even though I'm not a member, (been meaning to join) I have often looked at things associated with it. I was at the Orakei school auction the other night, and was impressed with your enthusiasm for the school. I'm sure that same enthusiasm will serve you well in other aspects of your life.- E.L

I am very sorry to hear that the Art Guild is closing after many years of dedication put in by yourself and others. I wish you all the best in your new endeavours and the Art Guild will be sadly missed – S.C

I absolutely thank you from the bottom of my heart for all that you have built and grown with NZ ART GUILD. It is a very sad and frustrating outcome. May new ventures show themselves to you when the time is ready. Love and Light – E.L.L

Christmas Crackers Exhibition 2011

Am so sorry to hear this. I know the effort and hard work you have put in to help artists and have appreciated your support and advice when I have needed it - even when I wasn't a financial member. I wish you all the very very best – M.F

Here at Arts Canterbury Inc. we wish to send our deep sorrow to you and your organisation. We know how hard it is to build an arts organisation. – Arts Canterbury.

Well that's a real blow to the arts community. Thank you so much for all your hard work and dedication – R.S

A very sad day for New Zealand art :-( Thank you for all you have done for the artists of New Zealand Sophia, this loss will leave a big hole in the New Zealand art scene – N.C

I am sorry to hear this Sophia. You provided a great well needed service / network for artists. Thank you for all your efforts. All the best for you for future ventures. – B.E

Sorry to hear the news Sophia, I just wanted to say that I understand, and how thankful I am for everything you and the NZ Art Guild have done for me. – J.M

Members entries to various Art Challenges:
Marlene Faithful - Its only natural, Mike Greenwood - Rest in peace, Stan Blanch - Alice & the Queen of Heart

So sorry that you have had to take this decision. So short sighted of the Charities Commission and sad for New Zealanders. Thanks for everything you have done for the art world and artists. Best wishes, - H.R

This will be a great loss to the whole of New Zealand as it was a great support network for this country's art community! I'd like to thank Sophia Elise personally for given artists from all over New Zealand the support they needed and a way to show off their work. : ) As well Sophia, I'd like to thank everyone at the NZ Art Guild and their volunteers for everything they have done too. : ) It's a very sad day and if there really is nothing to be done to save the NZ Art Guild, it will be greatly missed and will be hard to fill the very large hole that will be left behind. : ( Thanks again for all your hard work... - D.G.

I am very sad to hear that after all your hard work over the years and after months of negotiations you have been unsuccessful in achieving charitable trust status in order to keep the NZ Art Guild afloat. Thank you to you Sophia and all the volunteers who have helped run the guild and the exhibitions for us as this takes considerable time and effort, especially when you have family and other business commitments. I was looking at the Kumeu Art in the garden photos just last week and thinking how wonderful it looked. - S.R

You two have put in a great deal of time on us. I will miss the Guild very much. - C.C

I was so saddened to hear of the news the guild cannot continue for financial reasons. I'm angry at the powers that be that couldn't cut some slack...but mostly I am sad for the people who have put their heart and soul into it. It was a fantastic idea, and the hard work by you guys will always be appreciated, has inspired me to get into my hobby more, enjoyed the works of others on the galleries... and the forum has provided some fun discussions, and some good ideas/inspiration. I thank you so much for what you have done for artists around NZ, and my best way to thank you I guess is to be inspired to continue with my art love, probably turning to facebook and the other sites recommended in your email. But despite the sadness you must feel, please take some consolation that you have helped and inspired many artists around New Zealand, and should be very proud. - M.R

Thank you so much Sophia for not only being my dearest friend but also for being such a wonderful mentor to us all. Tanya, you are an absolute brick & have worked so hard alongside Sophia to make things happen for us. I will particularly miss this forum & hope we can all keep in touch. Facebook just isn't the same for me! Best of luck to everyone. - C.D

 Collaborative Projects in order: Fusion 2006, Patchworks 2007, Reach Out 2008, Ngatahi 2009, Bloom 2010, Light of my Life 2011

Tuesday, 6 December 2011

Last week of our final exhibition

Don't miss the last week of our final exhibition!!!!

Great opportunity to get all your christmas shopping done - there is something for everyone!!!
Late night - Thurs 8th Dec 7-9pm 

or if you can't get to the gallery - why not shop online???
All artworks are displayed in our online exhibition catalogue:

(shipping only available within NZ (additional charge), payment via NZ bank account only, use the contact page on the website to make an order)

Friday, 11 November 2011

IMPORTANT ANNOUNCEMENT: NZ Art Guild to permanently close Dec 23rd

Earlier this year we announced that we had restructured the NZ Art Guild into a charitable trust with a governing board. We had submitted an application to the charities commission so that we could achieve charitable status and therefore we would be eligible to apply for funding and grants in order to sustain the NZ Art Guild financially and grow it into the future.
After 7 months of discussions with the Charities Commission, last week we had our application for charitable status declined. This required an emergency board meeting and resulted in us re-examining the future of the NZ Art Guild. It has been decided with great sadness that the Guild is not a financially sustainable organisation and therefore the only option left to us is to close.

We realise that this will come as a shock to you all and we want you to understand that this decision was not made lightly. Some of you will know that the NZ Art Guild has been a true labour of love for me personally over the last 7 ½ years since it was first founded. I have made many sacrifices over this time in order to grow the Art Guild and deliver opportunities and services to artists. It was always something I believed in passionately and was determined to make it a success for artists all around NZ.
The strategic plan this year was to create a trust, appoint a board, gain donee status and apply for funding so that we could employ someone to take over from me as Executive Director in February as I am no longer able to continue in this role for personal reasons. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to achieve these goals.

This means that the NZ Art Guild will close it doors permanently at Christmas (Dec 23rd) The NZ Art Guild website will be live until the New Year and the NZ Art Guild Facebook Page, blog and twitter will remain in the interim but will not be updated.

We understand that artists who have subscribed to our database have done so for a variety of reasons and we make some suggestions below on alternative ways they can receive those services.

- Mentoring and Coaching – I will personally be available for business mentoring and life coaching under my own company Creative Business Consultants. NZ Art Guild members will get a much reduced rate for next year. These sessions will initially only be available in person in the Auckland area but later next year will be expanded to include skype and phone coaching. You can contact me directly via or phone 027 630 1810

- Website – for artists wanting online promotion, webpages or websites we recommend Alternatively Fine Art America offer a great option for only $30 USD a year (I have one of these myself – which you can check out here –

- Support – for professional support Artists Alliance –

- Online Community – There are numerous different groups on Facebook where New Zealand artists chat about their art and share advice and experiences. One is

- Information – We recommend all artists subscribe to the Big Idea Navigator Bulletin. This is packed full of great articles, opportunities, art awards, residencies, jobs and much more.

- Exhibition opportunities – Various community Art Centres and the NZ Academy of Fine Arts are great places to be members and then you have the opportunities to participate in their exhibitions.

The Last Word

I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the wonderful volunteers who have offered their time, energy and support to the NZ Art Guild over the years. With any organization it is a team effort and I feel very blessed to have had some wonderful team members helping us over the past 7 years.

Whatever your interest in the NZ Art Guild over the years has been; Whether you are an art lover, a business, a discounter/supplier, a past member, a current member I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for all your support of the NZ Art Guild, my vision, our charity events and of course the talented New Zealand Artists.

We wish you all the best with your future.

Kind Regards

Sophia Elise
Executive Director,
NZ Art Guild
Ph: 027 630 1810 Fax: 09 478 2586
Postal: PO Box 35098, Browns Bay, Auckland

Saturday, 5 November 2011

Christmas Crackers Coming Soon!!!


Christmas Crackers
Opening night Sat 26th Nov 6pm
runs until Sat 10th Dec

36 Red Art Studio/Gallery
389 Old Port Road

Gallery hours:
Mon - Fri 10am - 3pm
Sat 11am - 3pm

An exhibition featuring small arts, crafts and gifts from over 25 talented NZ Artists.
Perfect christmas shopping!!!
Cash and Carry.