Sunday, March 30, 2014


Did you know it was Neighbours' Day yesterday? I found out last weekend when I received an invitation to a Collins Street residents' get-together. My immediate neighbours on each side I know well enough, but the rest of the street not so well - a few familiar faces that I nod or wave to in passing.

Robyn and Basil at number 21 knew well ahead of time and had taken the trouble to apply for resource consent to close the street to traffic, so that we could gather around the barbeque and meet one another. Though I have developed adequate skills for pretending to be interested in people, I'm not a huge fan of mindless small talk and I prefer to use them in times of necessity rather than by choice. Despite this I decided to join the party, and mingled for what I judged to be a socially acceptable period of time. I met lots of perfectly pleasant people, was slobbered on by a few dogs and ate a couple of sausages. I hope Basil and Robyn felt well supported and their efforts appreciated. It's nice to have faces to put with the houses and know that friendly folk dwell within. It would be great to think that this inaugural Neighbours' Day became much more widespread in streets throughout New Zealand

Just around the corner there is a new face in the neighbourhood. Artist Alfred Memelink has built a new art gallery. The gallery has been open for a month or two, with an eagerly anticipated cafe and ice cream parlour to be added soon. This afternoon I attended a watercolour class in the studio above the gallery. I think some of the attendees mis-read the course description, because it clearly stated it was a beginner class. My friend and I managed to (just) hold our own, but clearly this was not the first time some others had put brush to paper.

Wet on wet technique for the moody sky.
I know, I know - why it's practically photographic the way I've captured Matiu-Somes!

I would have gone for more muted blues and greys had I had been given more choice on the palette, and I'm not sure Alfred thought I was properly reproducing the purple clouds he advocated. Just the same it was a bit of fun getting all arty at the neighbours on a Petone Sunday afternoon.  


  1. Good on you for having a go! I like the way the seagulls wings are in different positions!

  2. Matiu-Somes?
    I thought it was a depiction of Stuka bombers attacking one of the rescue boats off Dunkirk.

    1. What a unique and personal perspective. It's so rewarding for an artiste such as myself to have my work speak to your very (possibly twisted) soul. They do say truly great art will reveal those who view far more than the talent that produced it. I am humbled by your generous review.

    2. I agree with TC. Can't you se the flak bursts amongst the waterspouts of bomb burst?

  3. Thanks for the information on that new gallery. I'll try and get down there.. If the P lab next door doesn't blow first.