The Walters Prize 2024


The Walters Prize 2024


The Walters Prize 2024


The Walters Prize is Aotearoa New Zealand’s largest and most prestigious contemporary art award. Established in 2002 and now in its 11th iteration, the prize showcases and promotes contemporary art, and has, since its inception, shaped emergent discussion about contemporary New Zealand art. The Walters Prize 2024 marks the first iteration of the award in its new triennial format. 

As part of the prize, the Gallery presents an exhibition by four artists who have been nominated by an independent jury for their outstanding contribution to contemporary art in Aotearoa New Zealand. The four finalists for the Walters Prize 2024 are Juliet Carpenter, Owen Connors, Brett Graham and Ana Iti. Works by the finalists will be on display in a free exhibition at the Gallery.

The winner of the 2024 Walters Prize will be announced by an esteemed international judge in October. 

The Walters Prize is made possible with the generous support of the following:

Founding Benefactors and Principal Donors – Erika and Robin Congreve, Dame Jenny Gibbs.

Major Donors – Dayle Mace, Christopher and Charlotte Swasbrook.


The Walters Prize sees Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki present an exhibition by four artists who have been nominated for their outstanding contribution to contemporary art in New Zealand. The Walters Prize is unique because it focuses on an outstanding body of work made within a two-year period, as opposed to an artist’s entire practice. The winner receives $50,000. Prior to 2024, the Walters Prize was biennial. 

The Prize is named after New Zealand artist Gordon Walters (1919–1995). Walters, a leading modernist, produced abstract art of remarkable refinement and stimulated an ongoing discussion about the interrelationships between European, Māori and Pacific visual art traditions.

Established in 2002, the Walters Prize was the initiative of Founding Benefactors and Principal Donors Erika and Robin Congreve and Dame Jenny Gibbs, working in partnership with the Gallery. Our shared belief is in helping to increase access to and grow understanding of contemporary New Zealand art.

The Walters Prize 2024 marks the 11th iteration of this prestigious award. 

Auckland Art Gallery Toi o Tāmaki establishes the external jury two years prior to the exhibition. This consists of four art professionals from outside the Gallery whose job it is to determine which artworks exhibited over the two-year period contribute to enhancing art practice and the understanding of contemporary art in New Zealand. Regardless of an artist’s age, ethnicity or location, or in which part of the world it is presented in, their work needs to have exerted a remarkable impact or influence on the nature, perception or development of contemporary art in this country.

The jury members for the 2024 Walters Prize are: Robert Leonard, director, Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane; Tendai Mutambu, independent curator and writer, Auckland; Melanie Oliver, curator of contemporary art, Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetū; Hanahiva Rose, curator of contemporary art at Museum of New Zealand Te Papa Tongarewa. 

To determine the Walters Prize winner from the four nominated artists, an international judge is invited to New Zealand to view the artworks presented here and assess their merits. The judge is an art professional with the highest of international reputations, and must be a leading figure in the curation of contemporary art.

Previous judges have included: Kate Fowle (2021), Adriano Pedrosa (2018), Doryun Chong (2016), Charles Esche (2014, Mami Takaoka (2012), Vicente Todolí (2010), Catherine David (2008), Carolyn Christov-Bakargiev (2006), Robert Storr (2004), Harald Szeemann (2002)

2021: Mataaho and Maureen Lander, Atapō, 2020

2019: Ruth Buchanan, BAD VISUAL SYSTEMS, 2016/2018, mixed media installation

2016: Shannon Te Ao, Two shoots that stretch far out, 2012–14 and Okea ururoatia (never say die), 2016

2014: Luke Willis Thompson, inthisholeonthisislandwhereiam, 2012

2012: Kate Newby, Crawl out your window, 2010

2010: Dan Arps, Explaining Things, 2008

2008: Peter Robinson, Ack, 2006

2006: Francis Upritchard, Doomed, Doomed, All Doomed, 2005

2004: et al., restricted access, 2003

2002: Yvonne Todd for Asthma & Eczema, 2001