Tai Tapu Sculpture Garden


Tenth anniversary sculpture competition now open

Tai Tapu Sculpture Garden (TSG) will commission a sculpture to celebrate its tenth Annual Autumn Exhibition, in March 2023. The selected sculpture will need to be installed between April 2022 and February 2023.

Selection process and timeline

March 2019–January 2020: Expressions of Interest (EOI) from sculptors, with a brief (maximum two pages) idea/drawing/concept/model of a new proposed sculpture. An estimate of price and potential location would be appreciated. (Appendices may be added, if deemed essential by the artist).

March 2020: Announcement of three EOIs for fuller development of the proposal including full drawings and a maquette or model. Each of the three sculptors will receive a grant of up to $5,000 to prepare the full proposal.

January 2021: Submission of full proposals, inclusive of location and price.

March 2021: Announcement of winning proposal for commissioned sculpture.

March 2023: Sculpture unveiled at the tenth Annual Autumn Exhibition.

Selection criteria

The selection committee will judge proposals on five criteria:

  1. Quality of sculpture; including originality, creativity, thoughtfulness, durability and likely craftsmanship.

  2. Compatibility with the vision of TSG: to support contemporary New Zealand sculpture and enhance native biodiversity in Canterbury.

  3. Fit with TSG: how the sculpture uses and/or enhances the TSG landscape (site specific features). Artists should also include TSG location in their full proposal, and may include in the EOI. Artists should organize a walk around the sculpture garden with Peter Joyce &/or Annabel Menzies-Joyce. When appropriate TSG may pay for associated landscaping &/or planting costs.

  4. Ability of the artist to deliver the sculpture on time, at the agreed price.

  5. Cost and value for money. The anticipated cost is about $100,000, inclusive of GST, artist fee and installation costs, and a five-year maintenance plan, but does not include the development fee.

If the committee cannot decide on a single winning sculpture, it reserves the right to make a shared award.

selection committee

Comprises Lara Strongman, Darryn George, Graham Bennett, Melissa Reimer, Annabel Menzies-Joyce and Peter Joyce.

Call for proposals - Annual Autumn Exhibition 2020

Established and emerging artists are invited to submit proposals to participate in our Annual Autumn Exhibition which showcases the permanent collection and works for sale. 

We are interested in concepts for three-dimensional sculpture in all media suitable for outdoor exhibition, participatory, socially engaged or performance works, sound pieces and light works. All work new and original work will be considered.  

Deadline for submission of proposals for the March 2020 exhibition is 10 October 2019.

The programme committee will consider the calibre, originality, appropriateness and robustness of the concept for the purpose of the event. 
Artists will be notified by mid-November 2019. Works need to be finished and ready to install by early February 2020.

The purpose of Tai Tapu Sculpture Garden

  1. To enhance the cultural life of Canterbury by creating opportunities for people to experience contemporary sculpture in a native landscape, and

  2. To support New Zealand sculptors by providing a forum for the exhibition and sale of their work.

Proposals should include

  1. A brief description of the work - ie. inspiration, look and feel, artist’s intention

  2. A fuller description of the work within the context of New Zealand sculpture

  3. A drawing(s), or progress photographs if the work is already under construction

  4. Details of materials and dimensions

  5. Details about installation requirements

  6. Details about any technical assistance required (for example, is a hiab or engine crane required)

  7. Maintenance plan and health and safety considerations (ie. could the work be climbed?)

  8. Ideas about how the work will engage audiences

  9. Price of the work (incl. GST and commission payable to TSG).

Download this Proposal template to get you started.

Please also include

  1. A short CV of up to 2 pages

  2. A summary of the artist’s current practice

  3. Up to 10 digital images of previous work

  4. Details of current representative dealer galleries, if applicable.

All digital applications will be acknowledged upon receipt.

Other details

Site visits prior to submission of proposal are welcomed. Please phone or email to make an appointment.
Artists will be responsible for the transportation and installation of their work to TSG and for deinstallation of unsold works.


All queries regarding proposals should be emailed to Curator, Melissa Reimer: taitapusculpturegarden@gmail.com | 021 24 22 462.