Saturday, January 07, 2012

Road trip to Gisborne

As a surprise birthday treat for my fiftieth, Matthew organised a three day long weekend away. I had no idea where we were going and looked forward to it with a little trepidation! As it transpired Matthew drove Joe and I all the way to Gisborne and back, a 16 hour round trip! Although rather a long way to go just for three days, it was a great opportunity to see a remote part of NZ which we may never have got around to seeing. The last two hours of the trip to Gisborne entails a winding gorge road with dense rain forest where wild boar roam. On our way home we rescued a truck driver who had broken down in the gorge.

Wednesday, January 04, 2012

Gingerbread Houses

Every Christmas it is a family tradition in the Cole Carter household to make a gingerbread house! December 2010 we made a rather large house which was very difficult to put together and kept collapsing. This Christmas 2011 Matthew spied a kit in the local New World supermarket with pieces already baked, which resulted in a rather more 'tidy' house as you can see from the photos. Also the trick to make the pieces stick together is to use melted sugar and not icing sugar.

Friday, December 30, 2011

Rugby World Cup 2011 Auckland

Here are a few images from 'Party Central' on Queen's Wharf. The place was alive with people day and night during September and October with all games showing on big screens, and music on various stages when there were no matches on.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Flight lesson

Ardmore airport is a small but very busy airport about an hour south of Auckland. I had a flying lesson at Ardmore a few weeks ago which was a birthday present for the 50th and it was a lovely hot fine day.

The plane is a Grumman American, 2-seater. It has the look of an old fighter plane about it. First there is some checking to do. There are so many checklists for pilots. One of them is to check various things outside the plane, like taking some fuel from each tank into a glass vial and looking for any water or contaminants.

I was invited to check for stone chips on the propeller. The cost to replace one propeller is around $30,000 to $60,000!

The hot sunny weather creates updraughts from the warm air rising from the land. This makes for plenty of movement (turbulence). Great fun.

Perhaps foolishly the instructor, Tim gave me control of the aircraft for take-off, most of the flight and landing except when taking a couple of photos. Landing can be tricky! Awesome.

Sunday, January 02, 2011

Night at the bach

Notice the constellation of orion here with his sword pointing up. Upside down from the Southern hemisphere.

Not a very good photo of the eclipse but the cloud covered everything until it was nearly over. It had been a total lunar eclipse.

Short holiday at Sanctuary Lake Bach

A few days pre-Christmas rest at a rented bach in the Dome forest near Warkworth, north of Auckland. A small house in 38 acres with it's own lake.

The rain came down for the first couple of days but didn't dampen the spirits because we had a super bubble blower. Then when the weather cleared we had plenty of exploring to do.

The bach is Eco friendly, powered by a small hydro generator set below the lake and topped up with solar. Here is the hydro generator down in the forest below the lakes. The water has been split into two pipes and comes in from both front and back onto the turbine. Above it, the spinning aluminium drum, is the generator.

The house and lake are surrounded by forest which provided some great walks over tree logs and amongst the ponga trees. Ponga's are NZ tree ferns.

Family photo on the pier by the lake. One night Joe took a torch to the water's edge and we discovered that splashing the water and shining the torch into it attracted some quite large eels which bobbed up to the surface in the torch light. I wonder if we'll be swimming in it tomorrow.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Multi-Storey series

'level 2' | oil on linen | 120 x 170 cm | 2010

'restricted access' | oil on linen | 76 x 137 cm | 2010

'upper ramp' | oil on linen | 76 x 137 cm | 2010

'untitled [CP5]' | oil on linen | 120 x 170 cm | 2010

'rooftop access' | oil on linen | 50 x 91 cm | 2010

'untitled [CP3]' | oil on linen | 66 x 112 cm | 2010

'reserved section' | oil on linen | 83 x 106 cm | 2010

'untitled [CP1]' | oil on linen | 102 x 152 cm | 2010

Wallace award finalist 2010

Saturday, September 25, 2010

The Waikato

The longest river in New Zealand, The Waikato flows through Hamilton on it's 425 km journey to Port Waikato on the west coast, south of Auckland.
The river is important to local Maori regarding it as a source of Mana or pride. It is a beautiful and impressive river which also supplies electricity from nine hydro-electric stations along it's course.
In Hamilton, we went to the National Contemporary Art Awards exhibition at the Waikato museum a few weeks ago. This is one that I didn't get into. However a friend from AUT did get a painting in.
Several bridges cross the river in Hamilton, the most central two I have photographed here.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

West Coast walk

I'm trying out my new camera. Last month we went over to the other side of Auckland, the west side, and out of the city. As you come out of the sprawling suburbs which go on for ever, you start climbing gently up to a village called Titirangi. This is the start of the Waitakere ranges, a modest range of mountains forested with native NZ bush, a great place for bush walking. You can get very lost here.

As you descend on the other side of the hills you come down steeply to the coast, the wilder side of the Auckland isthmus which has black volcanic sand and was made famous in the film 'The Piano' years ago, but like many parts of New Zealand, has now been used as locations for many films.

On this trip we went to Muriwai beach and the coast between Muriwai and Bethells beach (Te Henga). The Waitakeres are where Sir Ed trained for his jaunt up Mount Everest, and a new 4 day walk has been marked for keen walkers called the Hilary Trail. Our walk on this day was along a section of it.

Back at Muriwai Beach to see quite a few surfers around sunset. The waves on this side of Auckland are bigger; there aren't any sheltering islands out on this side to break up the waves.

Friday, April 09, 2010

Run, swim, run

Joe competing in the school biathlon at Remuera Primary.

Always have a supply of sunnies in New Zealand. The sun can be very bright you know.

Saturday, February 27, 2010

Holiday at Church Bay bach

Barbecues on the deck are part of the New Zealand way of life.

Matthew had a day diving at the Poor Knights Islands.

The Poor Knights on the horizon.

Cruise ship at Princes Wharf, Auckland

There seem to be more regular visits to Auckland from cruise ships like this one, the Queen Victoria. Looks like fun!

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

Ken Carter Fireplace relief

Untitled (Fireplace Relief)
Ken Carter, 1969, Triptych, Cement Fondue and resin aluminium.
218 x 152 cm

The relief shows Adam and Eve at the gates of an orchard with a figure of a man climbing over the gate to get to the apples. It is in three sections, the standing figures (Adam & Eve) are cast in cement fondue while the section above is made in lighter resin & fibreglass. All have an aluminium gelcoat.