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Winning the Parkin Prize was a wild ride and has been of huge benefit to me. Since then, I have shown in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch, edited the book Assay/Essay: Artist-Run in Aotearoa New Zealand (with support from Chartwell Trust, published by Enjoy Public Art Gallery), and have undertaken a residency at The Banff Centre in Alberta, Canada.  This independent residency allowed me the time and space to develop a self-selected theme, and the works I made stemmed directly from The Floor We Walk On (a drawing of our entire house).  In 2016, Chris Parkin very kindly lent The Floor We Walk On to The Dowse Art Museum to show in curator Sian Van Dyk's Suburban Dreams.  It was so special to see the work having another outing, especially in such a gorgeous exhibition.

I definitely think artists should enter the Parkin, there's nothing to lose and the experience itself is a prize so just have fun with it!  The Parkin show is always full of incredible and strong work so I feel very lucky that the judges selected mine.  It's a privilege to win, certainly, but it's also a thrill to be a finalist, and even if you don't make the finals, just don't stress it: if you hadn't entered you wouldn't have given yourself any chance at all.  

Wellington is still home for me, and I am now working towards an exhibition in Melbourne in September.

Gabrielle Amodeo