Two weeks ago I learned that I am a finalist in the Wallace Art Awards this year. It took a week for it to sink in, but now I am really savouring the moment. For a New Zealand artist it is not dissimilar to winning lotto.

They give you two and a half weeks to get the artwork to the exhibition space and I can assure you, you need every minute of it. My artwork is an installation made up of 30 individual pieces and this has to be packed in a way that prevents if from getting damaged in transport. Of course it has to be easily packed and unpacked as well as it might be included in a travelling exhibition.

The box ended up being an artwork in itself, but it is finally finished. Originally I had bought a bag of off-cut foam and I wanted to stuff everything in the empty box we had built to size. For a night I sat on the floor packing and unpacking the box, scratching my head and getting increasingly frustrated. Nobody would have been able to make sense of all the bits and pieces, if they indeed found everything hidden between the pieces of foam. Some of the parts are very small. So the choice was either to write a hundred page manual or continue on the design of the box to make it more accessible and tidy. Everyday there was a little addition to the box and finally after two weeks we are finished, just in time to send it off.

Does anybody ever have a deadline with some time to spare? Certainly not me.

So tonight I will be packing it again and this time it will be a breeze.