Karen Fagan is the artist behind the trophies for Hawke's Bay, Tauranga and Otago. Karen has been creating things from other things for as long as she can remember. At different times she has dabbled in play dough, screen printing, lead lighting, painting, sculpture, and felting, depending on the ages of her children and what was around. Bringing these crafts together is reflected in the trophy designs, along with the fact that she lives in rural Hawke's Bay and has a practical and patient partner who helps her with the chainsaw and nailing parts.
Libby Morrison created the Wellington trophies. You can see more about her inspiration below.
We love our trophies for lots of reasons. They're more affordable and in line with our kaupapa than big cash prizes. As we add names we are making a record of our community, they're great advocates for what we do, and they look cool!
The Fruit Bin: Hawke's Bay Poetry Slam Champion & The Marie Dunningham Spirit of the Slam Award began as old apple bins and some glass left over from a leadlight lampshade.
Marie Dunningham was a long time supporter of our work in Hawke's Bay, and a competitor at our first Hawke's Bay Slam in 2018. In a lineup mostly of teenagers she stood her ground and represented her generation. Recent hip surgery meant she took a while to get to the mic, but once she got there she blew everyone away with her incisive, funny, wonderful poetry. She had the audience in the palm of her hand, made it to the final round and embodied what we're trying to achieve with these slams. Marie passed away a couple of months later, so with permission of her husband Roy we named our Spirit of the Slam Award in her honour.
You can see all the HB Slam Champs and Spirit of the Slam winners here.
Wellington based poet and visual artist Libby Morrison created these stunning pieces.
The Fancy Box: Wellington Poetry Slam Champion represents the winners and their mana with its gold leaf, while The Old Mate: Spirit of the Slam Award features the faces of Libby's poetry community in Auckland where she is from. They're mounted on old fenceposts from Hawke's Bay.
You can see all the winners of these two trophies here.
The Fence Post: Tauranga Poetry Slam Champion & The Spirit of the Slam Award began as fence posts found in the mud at the back of an orchard. The wood is rimu and they are probably over 60 years old. The paint was new and the putting it together was fun.
You can see the winners of these trophies here.
Says artist Karen Fagan "A discarded bit of an apple pallet meets a leftover piece of decking. Add some paint, some nails and a sunny day, and this is what emerged. The peace symbol hiding in the big one was an unintentional bonus."
The Flat Account is the reward for the Otago Poetry Slam Champion, a tribute to the Dunedin student culture, accompanied by the traditional Spirit of the Slam Award.
You can see all previous winners of the Otago Poetry Slam here.