In a collaborative venture with the major Central Auckland art institutions, this Eden Arts initiative presents the very best student works from each of Elam, Unitec, AUT and Whitecliffe in a single exhibition, awarding a cash prize to the overall winners.

For Eden Arts, this award (launched in 2011) seeks to complement our longstanding annual Young Artists Awards while extending the geographical area in which we can help to promote and support young artists.

The 2020 Art Schools Award took place in early August at Webb's Auction House in Mt Eden.


The award is open to full-time undergraduates. Five student entries are selected from each school and judged by independent judges appointed by Eden Arts. The Overall Winner receives $5,000. Three Highly Commended students each receive $1,000. The Eden Arts Board may also award an additional discretionary award of $500 - the Board's Choice.

The original premise of the award was that the art schools were to rotate as host institution, with Elam as the oldest hosting the inaugural award in July 2011 followed in order by Unitec, Whitecliffe and AUT. Following the completion of the first two four-year cycles, since 2019 the event has been generously hosted by Webb's Auction House in Mt Eden. In 2019 we also expanded beyond the original Central Auckland geographic area to include students from Manukau Institute of Technology.

Full registration details and rules of entry are available from the individual art schools or contact Cathy Manning from the Eden Arts Board at


The judges for this year's event were artist Peata LarkinCurator | Kaitiaki Whakaaturanga at Te Uru Waitakere Contemporary Gallery Chloe Geoghegan and freelance writer and curator Francis McWhannell



There was a guided tour of the award exhibition on the last day of the show. This was an opportunity to hear some of the participating students talk about their work and receive insights from within the judging panel.



Congratulations to all twenty finalists in this year's award. 

The 2020 award winners are: