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    We’ve been there. We lived and breathed creativity at school. Life then took over… it was never quite the same with no painting, making or creating everyday.

    We know there were thousands out there like us – creative New Zealanders who probably shelved their school art portfolios under their parents’ stairs, or even worse, in the school skip.

    So, to make sure other talented young creatives don’t step off the creative ledge after school, we’ve set up a programme to invite young, raw visual talent to showcase their work in a professional, mana enhancing way, and get a taste of what it’s like to be a practicing artist.

    We invite young artists (aged 15-18 years) to submit their best works. A panel of judges choose the top artworks to show at a well publicised two-week exhibition, with all profits going directly to the artists. We run a no-cost-to-participate programme by providing upfront financial support to professionally frame the original artworks, as well as funding the reproduction of limited edition prints.

    As part of our mission to encourage continued participation in the arts once these students leave their school environment, we award an annual scholarship to one deserving artist per region, consisting of a $5,000 prize package to help support the growth and development of their artistic career.

    If you are familiar with our programme, you’ll notice our fresh new look and brand. Formerly The Creators’ Room and originating in Ōtautahi, we have now rebranded to ‘Artstart’ and as a registered Charitable Trust, are rolling the programme out through Aotearoa over the next three years.

    So for the young creatives out there, get involved, get paid and get started.