Whitecliffe lecturer Matt Dowman received a Merit Award for his painting Summer Shudder at the 2011 Molly Morpeth Canaday Art Award.
The award began as the Shell Art award in 1986 instigated by Jacqui Hughes and Lynne Dawson as the cornerstone of a multi-disciplined annual arts festival for Whakatane. It was in 1991 that the Molly Morpeth Canaday Trust became the principal sponsor and the award became known as the Molly Morpeth Canaday Art Award held annually in conjunction with Summer Arts events in Whakatane.
Molly Morpeth was passionate about painting and in the 1960's showed her maturity as an artist when her works became confident, colourful; totally embracing expressionism.
Of equal importance have been the moves made by Frank H. Canaday, her husband, to assist the arts in New Zealand by the establishment of a series of funds. The Molly Morpeth Canaday Trust in Whakatane is one of the few remaining. It benefits emerging artists nationwide in 2 and 3 dimensional work in two events: the Molly Morpeth Canaday 3D Award and the Molly Morpeth Canaday Art Award for painting and drawing.