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Halcyon Days by Alexandra Howe


Wed 9 Nov 2016, 10:00am–3:00pm
Thu 10 Nov 2016, 10:00am–3:00pm
Fri 11 Nov 2016, 10:00am–3:00pm
Sat 12 Nov 2016, 10:00am–3:00pm
Tue 15 Nov 2016, 10:00am–3:00pm

Where: Railway Street Studios, 8 Railway St, Newmarket, Auckland

Restrictions: All Ages

Ticket Information:

  • Admission: Free

Listed by: fionacable

Halcyon Days - Traditionally refers to a period of calm weather during winter, and in more recent times, a period of peace and happiness, an idyllic time.

In ancient Greek Mythology, Alcyone (Halcyon) and Ceyx were deeply in love but it angered Zeus, who condemned them to unforgiving fates. Ceyx drowned in a storm at sea, and Alcyone was transformed into a Kingfisher. She had to lay her eggs on the beach during winter, where stormy, icy seas would destroy them and kill any chicks that hatched. But Alcyone's grief moved Zues to pity, and he granted her a few days of good weather in the midst of winter in which to lay her eggs and see her baby birds live.

This exhibition draws inspiration from two mid-winter trips in the South Island. The first was in 2015, ten days travelling in a camper van with my partner. The second in 2016, with my children and a dear friend with her children. Surprisingly with both trips, aside from very occasional rain or snow, we enjoyed clear and calm, although cold weather.

I am inspired by the effect of light across the landscape, and the resulting mood, or feeling it evokes. How a subtle change from a passing cloud, shift in time or something more dramatic, like the onset of a storm or sudden stopping rain shower, can transform the view or feeling of the landscape. Incorporating memory of the experience and response to the view, I have attempted to capture the emotion of that particular time in place. Each painting is closely linked to the people I travelled with. They hold precious memories of a moment in time.

"I watched the colours on the mountains across the lake, wondering at the depths which lie between the hard brilliance of noon and the tender drift of shadows in the dusk." - Monte Holcroft, The Deepening Stream, 1940

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