Inspirational weaver a true treasure

KAT PICKFORD
Last updated 11:30 19/06/2012
Peg Moorhouse
EMMA ALLEN
Our first taonga : Waikawa weaver Peg Moorhouse has been made the first Marlborough Living Cultural Treasure for her many years of contribution to weaving. Mrs Moorhouse stands with two pieces of her work exhibited at the Marlborough Museum, Opera Cloak: Tribal Cloak 1987, left, and Wall Hanging: Emerging Life 1988

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Marlborough's first Living Cultural Treasure, Peg Moorhouse, is much like her art - amusing, colourful and inspiring.

Mayor Alistair Sowman presented the 94-year-old Waikawa weaver with the award at the Marlborough Museum in Blenheim yesterday in recognition of 70 years dedication to the art.

Although she was delighted, Mrs Moorhouse said she found it hard to believe she was being recognised for doing something she loved.

"I've loved every moment of what I do. I'm very honoured," she said.

The concept of the Living Cultural Treasure is to recognise individual contribution to the community with significant cultural skills and knowledge.

Marlborough Museum textile group volunteer Annette Morgan, who helped hang a collection of Mrs Moorhouse's work on show at the museum until July 29, said that despite her work spanning 70 years she had a modern streak appreciated by weavers young and old.

"She's very down to earth and such an amusing person to talk to. Some of her pieces are really colourful and trendy and I think she would be very inspiring for young people, too."

The committee that appointed Mrs Moorhouse as the first Marlborough Living Cultural Treasure is a group of six people, including Marlborough Museum chief executive Steven Austin, who hopes the concept will catch on.

"We will be asking everyone in the Marlborough community to put more names forward because, like all their art work, every artist needs to be appreciated, especially living ones."

The committee members are Mr Austin, Marlborough Museum board members Dale Webb and Belinda Vavasour, Marlborough Mayor Alistair Sowman, former councillor Jill Bunting and museum ambassador Toni Gillan.

Mrs Moorhouse will be officially recognised when she is presented with a medal at the museum on Friday night.

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- The Marlborough Express

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