Angelique Hicks with her drawing of a kiwi, which earned $600 at the Love Pukaha auction. PHOTO/SAM TATTERSFIELD


Teenage Clareville artist Angelique Hicks was hoping for the best with her contribution to the Love Pukaha fundraising auction on Friday night in Masterton, to raise funds for Pukaha National Wildlife Centre.

The annual event features a range of donated items in both silent and live auctions.

Ahead of her drawing of a kiwi going under the hammer on Friday, the 14-year-old was “going for $500” – hoping to build on the success of her artwork at previous auctions.

Her first piece sold for $420, and second time around she reached $450 – this time she raised $600 for a drawing featuring white ink pen on black paper.

Angelique says she started drawing “fairies and things” at a young age.

But she “started taking it seriously around when I turned 10”.

Hicks is the daughter of Pukaha ranger Mireille Hicks and art tends to be a mix of extinct native birds and animals, and “huia, tuatara, and all the birds you can see at Pukaha”.

The fundraising dinner raised about $17,500 for Pukaha with Conservation Minister Eugenie Sage the guest speaker for the event.

She spoke about the importance of the wetland restoration project she had helped kickstart that morning at Pou Aruhe, on the eastern edge of Lake Onoke.

The work is part of the wider Wairarapa Moana wetlands project to enhance Lakes Wairarapa and Onoke.