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Marilynn Webb takes supreme Māori art award

Marilynn Webb, won the supreme award for excellence and achievement in Māori art at the Te Waka Toi Awards at Te Papa in Wellington last night.

The Dunedin-based printmaker's work has featured in more than 200 exhibitions around the world over several decades, and her art explores concepts of land, ecology, politics, women in art, and Māori and post-colonial history.

Ms Webb, who is 82, said she was surprised to hear she had been given the award, but feels privileged to be recognised for her work.

"I felt quite emotional about it because I have worked in this area for 52 years so I feel quite overwhelmed actually."

Some of her old colleagues, who she trained with, were at the awards ceremony this evening, including visual artist Sandy Adsett who won the Te Tohu o Te Papa Tongarewa Rongomaraeroa Award recognising excellence and outstanding contribution to Māori arts.

"To go down in the history ledgers as part of it ... I'm feeling very happy about this, and I'm feeling very that the people here have acknowledged the importance and the creation of the contemporary Māori arts movement and are rewarding everybody," Ms Webb said.

New Zealand Art Council Māori committee chair Suzanne Ellison said Marilynn Webb had made an outstanding contribution to Ngā Toi Māori (Māori art).

"I congratulate Marilynn for this award recognising her outstanding body of work over many years, which is a significant contribution to Ngā Toi Māori and also to art in this country."

In all, 13 awards were presented to 12 of New Zealand's most talented Māori artists, advocates and community leaders.

The awards recognised excellence and achievement across all artforms including marae arts (traditional, marae-based artforms such as carving, and weaving) as well as contemporary artforms such as theatre, literature and visual arts.
Award winners:

Te Tohu o Te Papa Tongarewa Rongomaraeroa Award recognising excellence and outstanding contribution to Māori arts

Sandy Adsett

Ngā Tohu ā Tā Kingi Ihaka - Sir Kingi Ihaka Awards recognising lifetime contribution to strengthening Māori art and culture

Ranui Ngarimu
Gavin Bishop
Tā Tipene O'Regan
Mere Walker
Parekowhai Whaitiri

Te Tohu Whakamānawa o Te Matatini | Award for outstanding contribution to Kapa Haka

Kuini Moehau Reedy
Pita Sharples

Te Tohu Toi Kē a Te Waka Toi |Award recognising a significant, positive impact on the development and practice of Māori arts

Lyonel Grant
Isaac James
Nerys Ngaruhe

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