Art fellows announced

The University of Otago's arts fellows for next year come from Auckland, Wellington, Texas, Wairoa and Dunedin.

The fellowships, announced jointly by pro-vice-chancellor humanities Tony Ballantyne and vice chancellor Harlene Hayne, provide recipients with a stipend for between six months and a year and a space on campus to pursue their projects.

The Frances Hodgkins Fellow is Auckland artist Campbell Patterson. A university release said he had been making and exhibiting work in various mediums, often interchanging them, including, writing, sculpture, photography, painting and video.

He planned to focus on both film and sculpture.

The Robert Burns Fellow, Craig Cliff, of Dunedin, would work on a novel about a location scout and a levitating saint, ''another tilt at the margin between the weird and the routine, art and life, past and present,'' he said.

Cliff's short story collection A Man Melting won the 2011 Commonwealth Writers Prize Best First Book, and his novel The Mannequin Makers has been translated into Romanian, with a United States version due next year.

He has also published poetry, columns, book reviews and essays, and presents at festivals and conferences about writing or his other specialty - the design of education facilities.

''Taking up the Burns Fellowship in 2017 will be the best kind of disruption for me, and an adventure for my young family.''

Chris Gendall, from Auckland, will be the Mozart Fellow for a second successive year.

His musical compositions have been performed in Europe, Asia, North and South America.

''I'll be working away at a few pieces; some solo, some orchestral music, and a new adventure in the world of brass bands.''

Caroline Sutton Clark, from Texas, the Caroline Plummer Fellow in Community Dance, has enjoyed a wide-ranging career in dance, studying dance forms, performing professionally with ballet, modern, and butoh (a form of Japanese dance theatre) companies, and been involved in many choreography projects. She has also created oral history archives.

''My oral history project, Dancing Our Stories, will assemble an archive of interviews with people who dance in diverse ways in the Otago region, offer workshops that explore sharing oral histories and how movement can enrich the process of rediscovering and reintegrating memories, and culminate in a community dance performance,'' she said.

The Creative New Zealand University of Education Children's Writer in Residence will be Mere Whaanga, from Wairoa, Hawke's Bay.

Dr Whaanga's knowledge of Maori land lore complemented her studies into Maori land law, the university said. She had worked as a professional historian, researcher and project manager on the Treaty of Waitangi claims of the Wairoa area.

Among her extensive list of publications are four children's picture books, which she wrote and illustrated, with a fifth due for publication in early 2017.

Dr Whaanga plans to write a fantasy novel for young adults.

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