Wild Creations 2020

Wild Creations offers artists the opportunity to engage in a Department of Conservation experience. The selected artists will create new work that tells the conservation story and enriches New Zealanders’ lives through connection to our nature and heritage.


$36,000 supporting at least two projects
Find out who got funded recently

Artforms funded:

This content is tagged as All Artforms .

Funding rounds

Opening dates:
Closing dates:
Notification dates:
Round 1
30 Sep 2019
6 Dec 2019, 5pm
14 Feb 2020

1. Check your eligibility

Who can apply

  • Individuals who are New Zealand (NZ) citizens or permanent residents – organisations are not eligible to apply for this fund.
  • NZ artists based overseas. But, the application must:
    • show direct benefit to NZ arts
  • and you must have it endorsed by:
    • a NZ artist(s) resident in NZ and/or;
    • a well-established NZ-based arts organisation(s).

Project timing

Your project, or the stage of it for which you are seeking funding, must:

  • start after 14 February 2020  
  • be completed by 14 February 2021

Benefits and track record

To be eligible for Creative New Zealand funding:

  • your project or activities must directly benefit New Zealand arts, artists or practitioners.
  • you must have a track record of experience and success — this means you must have:
    • recognition from peers or experts
    • achieved a degree of critical or sales success
    • specialised training or practical experience.

If you don't have the track record we're looking for, you may be able to get funding through the Creative Communities Scheme.

How often can you apply?

You can make one application in this funding round.

Re-applying for the same project

You can only re-apply for the same project if you have written permission from the Manager, Funding Services. Contact Funding Services first to see if your application would be eligible for re-submission.

Other Creative New Zealand funding

Your project cannot have received funding from any other Creative New Zealand programme or initiative, including the Creative Communities Scheme, our international and capability building initiatives and investment programmes.

Organisations in the Toi Uru Kahikatea or Toi Tōtara Haemata investment programmes are not eligible.

Late reports and breaches of agreements

We cannot fund you if you, your organisation, or key members of your team:

  • are more than 16 weeks overdue with a report for a previous grant or investment
  • are in breach of the conditions of a current funding agreement
  • were in 'default' of a funding agreement and sent in a late report in the six months prior to the closing date for a new application.

2. See what's funded


Wild Creations is a collaboration between Creative New Zealand and the Department of Conservation (DOC). It enables artists to engage creatively with New Zealand’s unique nature and engage in a DOC conservation experience. The selected artists will be expected to create new work that reflects and builds on their experience, telling the conservation story and enriching New Zealanders’ lives through connection to our nature and heritage.

The art work may be created during, or after the experience and should include high-quality documentation (including photos and/or video) to help Creative New Zealand and DOC communicate the results of the project.

The purpose of the programme is to:

  • foster links between the conservation and arts communities
  • provide new ways to connect New Zealanders to conservation
  • promote a wider understanding of conservation values and awareness of conservation issues
  • provide New Zealand artists with opportunities to experience the people, stories and challenges associated with our country’s unique natural and historic heritage
  • enable artists to develop arts projects based on conservation experiences.

Wild Creations Project Priorities

Projects must demonstrate an awareness of conservation and achieve one, or more, of the following:

  • contributing to the conservation story
  • enriching New Zealanders’ lives through connection to our nature and heritage
  • including a perspective of Mātauranga Māori, iwi engagement or telling the story of places of particular significance to Māori
  • telling the story of historic sites through the art work.

Available DOC experiences

Your application must identify the DOC experience you wish to undertake, and provide detail of:

  • your preferred location and dates for undertaking the experience
  • the arts project you plan to undertake either during or as a result of the experience
  • how your arts project will reflect and build on the experience
  • any specific needs you may have when undertaking the experience, e.g. health and safety needs, medical conditions or mobility access needs.

Please visit the DOC website for further information about potential experiences for your Wild Creations project. These include:

We cannot guarantee that your stated location preference will be available. If you are selected, DOC will use its best endeavours to agree a location that is suitable for you, your project and for DOC.

Costs covered

The amount of the grant will depend on the location and nature of your project. As a guide, funds will be allocated as follows:

  • an artist’s stipend while you are undertaking the DOC experience
  • project material costs
  • the cost of travel to and from your home to the relevant DOC office.

A total fund of $36,000 will be allocated to support a minimum of two projects.

Projects that need additional support to be completed after the experience may be eligible for support from other Creative New Zealand funding programmes, e.g. Arts Grants.

Support from DOC

At a minimum DOC will provide each artist with: 

  • transport between the relevant DOC office and the project site
  • information about the facilities and features of the experience location
  • the name and contact details for the member of local DOC staff who will be appointed to liaise with the artist
  • site-based support for the artists from regional DOC staff.

In addition to the above, artists that are away from home overnight will receive:

  • accommodation of a reasonable standard, taking into account the nature and locations of the experience
  • access to reasonable facilities for heating, cooking, lighting and washing
  • access to reasonable facilities to obtain or store food
  • a reasonable power source
  • a safe means of communication with DOC staff, e.g. phone.

What we don’t fund

  • Activities that are the funding responsibility of other government agencies, e.g. feature films, music videos or content for radio or television.
  • Activities that are associated with the 2020 Festival of Pacific Arts and Culture (as funding has been provided through the selection of the official Aotearoa Delegation).
  • Game design, fashion design or commercial design.
  • Education resources and activities that are part of a course of study in New Zealand.
  • Marae restoration or adornments such as whakairo, tukutuku and kōwhaiwhai.
  • Buying capital items.
  • Buying or renovating buildings.
  • An organisation's ongoing administration or infrastructure costs, except through our investment programmes.
  • International promotion of NZ literature. Applications can be made to the Publishers Association of New Zealand.
  • Activities that are part of the core business of a Tertiary Education Organisation (TEO) or a territorial (local) authority (including a Council Controlled Organisation). Applications from staff or contractors of a TEO, or a TEO subsidiary, must disclose the full extent of the support they will receive from the TEO for their proposed project. Where equivalent, competing applications are received from TEO applicants, and those not, priority is given to freelance artists and practitioners

3. Make an application

Register or Log in

How to apply

  1. Log in to the portal to start your application.
  2. Read the Application guidelines and requirements for specific activities (pdf 176KB)
  3. Prepare a budget using the budget template in the online application portal or the Excel template supplied in the Budget Guidelines
  4. Gather artistic support material. Read the Support material guidelines
  5. Complete each question in the portal application form.
  6. Submit your application online by 5pm on the closing date.

4. Assessing applications

What we assess your application on


Is it a strong idea? We look for the following indicators:

  • The artistic aims are clearly expressed
  • The idea is compelling
  • The proposed project will reflect and build on the nominated Wild Creations experience.


Is this viable? We look for the following indicators:

  • The process to achieve the idea is realistic and well planned
  • Costs and revenue are realistic
  • The budget is thorough and accurate
  • The people involved have sufficient experience to deliver this project.

Strategic fit

Is there a good fit with the purpose of this fund?  We look for the following indicators:

  • The project delivers to one or more of Creative New Zealand’s strategic outcomes
  • The project delivers to one or more of DOC’s Wild Creations priorities
  • The artistic outcome and/or participant experience is likely to be high quality.

In your application you must choose one of these Creative New Zealand strategic outcomes to be assessed on:

  • New Zealanders participate in the arts
  • High-quality New Zealand art is developed
  • New Zealanders experience high-quality arts.

Scoring your application

Our assessors use the following assessment scale to score Idea, Viability and Strategic Fit:

7 – Excellent – Exceeds all indicators
6 – Very Good – Satisfies all indicators and exceeds in two
5 – Good – Satisfies all indicators and exceeds in one
4 – Acceptable – Satisfies all indicators
3 – Minor reservations – Satisfies two indicators only
2 – Major reservations – Satisfies one indicator only
1 – Unacceptable – Does not meet the indicators

Who assesses your application

An external peer assessor and a DOC representative will assess your application. Pasifika or Māori artists and practitioners are involved in assessing applications from Pacific or Māori applicants. Recommendations are made to Creative New Zealand’s Senior Manager for Arts Development Services and DOC for a decision.

Nominate peer assessors for our funding programmes

External peer assessors are asked to evaluate a range of applications made to Creative New Zealand’s funding programmes and initiatives against specific criteria.

Peer Assessor nomination form (doc 167KB)

Peer Assessor terms and conditions (pdf 259KB)

5. Notification of results

We will email all applicants their result eleven weeks after the application closing date. We will notify applicants on Friday 14 February 2020.

We also list successful applicants on Who got funded

If you are successful, we will contact you about your:

  • funding agreement
  • payment schedule
  • reporting requirements.

6. On completion

A project completion report is required within 12 weeks of the project end date using the report template. To be considered for further funding, your report needs to be submitted on time.

Login to report online

7. Who to contact

For more information or advice: