MEDIA RELEASE 13 April 2005
Local disabled artist’s stunning paintings recognised in two prestigious art awards
Local Hamilton disabled artist, John Loughnan, has had his beautiful artwork
recognised by two prestigious art awards, taking out a prize at this year’s
Easter Show and the Bruce Hopkins Memorial Art Award.
John was awarded third place In the Mouth and Foot Painting Category at the
Easter Show for his striking paint of two colts in front of Mt Pirongia.
He was also awarded second prize in the still-life category of the prestigious
Bruce Hopkins Memorial Art Award for his vibrant painting of poppies.
John, a student member of the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists (MFPA), and former
New Zealand record holding water-skier, began painting with a brush held in his
mouth shortly after he broke his neck in a mustering accident almost twenty
“Winning these awards was an honour that I wasn’t expecting. I had some time
constraints when preparing my paintings so I wasn’t expecting much to come of
them. It was a really good surprise to find out that I had won a prize in both
“I always look for new inspiration everywhere, but you have to be enthused about
what you do and that is why I like to paint New Zealand’s beautiful landscapes
and rural scenes.
“I am a perfectionist in life, especially when it comes to my artwork so I try
to paint scenes that I think will make great pictures and cards and that people
MFPA is a self-help organisation which gives disabled people the opportunity to
fulfil their creative ambitions while still maintaining financial independence,
by selectively selling their highly regarded works of art.
MFPA was founded in 1956 by a group of mainly Swiss, French, British and German
artists. It was founded in 1961 in New Zealand and now has a membership of over
700 disabled artists in more than 70 countries throughout the world.
To become a Student Member an artist must qualify by painting using a brush held
in either their mouth or foot, having lost the use of their hands through an
illness or accident. Once an artist becomes a Full Member or Associate they are
guaranteed a salary for life, even if they are unable to continue painting.
For further information on the Mouth and Foot Painting Artists or to place an
order please contact MFPA in Auckland on 9827 6746.
The Bruce Hopkins Memorial Art Award was started more than 16 years ago to
commemorate Bruce’s contribution to the MFPA and to disabled artists throughout
New Zealand. During the 1970s and 80s Bruce was the only disabled New Zealand
artist to belong to the MFPA and was responsible for encouraging and inspiring
disabled people to start painting with a brush held in their mouth.
Released for MFPA by Dennis Rutzou Public Relations.
For further information contact Marie Tritsaris on (612) 9413 4244.