Tuesday, August 26th, 2003 – Day 189

Tuesday, August 26th, 2003 – Day 189

Last day in Christchurch but I am not flying out until 10.20pm tonight. I did not want to do too much today. I got up at 8.30am. The cleaners come into the dorms at 9.00am to walk people and ask them whether they are staying another nights. Its a bit of a pain. Packed and put my bag into storage. I went next store to ballies Irish Pub for a big fry up. Very nice! After that I went around town, bought a newspaper and read it over coffee. I then went to the OUR CITY education centre.

It is a public centre for debating, presenting and exchanging ideas and knowledge about Christchurch… Our City O-Tautahi opened in August 2002 and is located in the former Municipal Chambers building on the corner of Oxford Terrace and Worcester Boulevard, Christchurch, New Zealand…Our City O-Tautahi is a facility that provides exhibition, display, debating and seminar spaces to showcase, debate and examine past, present and future issues about Christchurch

It was Ok for 20 minutes. I enjoyed looking at old paintings and street maps. New Zealand has a bad record of knocking down and demolishing old historical buildings. Many of them are knocked down s recently as the 1980s. To be honest Auckland and Wellington were ugly cities. Christchurch is a different story. It quite nice and compact with some really nice buildings.

Some Good sites on Christchurch

I then visited the City Art Gallery.

Christchurch Art Gallery Te Puna o Waiwhetu opened on 10 May, 2003 in the heart of the city’s cultural precinct, bounded by Worcester Boulevard, Gloucester and Montreal Streets. The new $47.5 million facility features two floors of exhibition space, two educational activity areas, an auditorium, a cafe and wine bar, two retail outlets, a Sculpture Garden and underground parking.

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Christchurch – New Zealand – City Gallery. (26-08-2003)

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Christchurch – New Zealand – City Gallery. (26-08-2003)

The name Te Puna honours waipuna, the well spring (the actual artesian spring on the site) and Waiwhetu refers to one of the tributaries in the immediate vicinity, which flows into the Avon River. Waiwhetu may also be translated as as water in which stars are reflected.

I enjoyed my hour there. I really enjoyed a collection of new paintings by prominent Christchurch artist Margaret Hudson-Ware. It was called Refugees.

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Christchurch – New Zealand – City Gallery. Refugees (26-08-2003)

These works refer not only to the flight of persecuted people throughout history, but also to a sense of personal alienation within oneÂ’s own home or family.

I also rang accross a picture that has caused muchcontroversyy in the New Zealand papers. A full-frontal nude photograph of Maori entertainer Mika wearing false breasts is causing controversy at the new Christchurch Art Gallery. It’s been labelled disgusting and pornographic, and one woman has called for its removal – but the artist [Christine Webster] is thrilled with the reaction, and the gallery remains unrepentant.” Stuff reproduces the photograph with the offending crotch masked. More about Webster and Mika. (Link snagged from World Sex News.

Exposed: why this photo has sparked a furore

17 August 2003

By KIM KNIGHT

Warning: modern art may offend some viewers. A full-frontal nude photograph of Maori entertainer Mika wearing false breasts is causing controversy at the new Christchurch Art Gallery.

It’s been labelled disgusting and pornographic, and one woman has called for its removal – but the artist is thrilled with the reaction, and the gallery remains unrepentant.

Mika says he loves the photograph, taken in 1994.

“I’ve always liked the masculine and the feminine. I can drop kick a rugby ball and put eyeliner on straight.”

But Christchurch woman Diane Botherway, 50, says it took days to get the image out of her mind.

“I walked round the corner, and I felt like there was a nude man standing there exposing himself to me. That’s how much of a shock it was, because it was so graphic.

“You just couldn’t get away from it. I felt almost violated.”

Click on the picture to see it in its original size

Christchurch – New Zealand – City Gallery. – Ban it for Gods sake. (26-08-2003)

As I said before New Zealnd has a puritan streak and especially Christchurch. it was founded to be a perfect Anglican English City and many still see that as their heritage and birth rite. When a gay Maori cabaret artist who won the 2001 New Zealand Queer of the Year title turns up in there new museum open since May, heads turn (and vomit).

After that I went on the NET. As I Said I do not want to do too much today. I checked out bus timetables to the airport and hostels in Melbourne. It looks like I have to pay a 25 NZD departure tax.

Bus to christchurch Airport: 5 NZD. This site also has some information.

Melbourne Airport to City.

my Hotel is Melborne will be the Bakpak.

Did little the rest of the evening. I ate dinner at Thai Thai restaurant (mains under 5 NZD) on Colombo Streett, went to the supermarket, rang the hostel in Australia and walked the streets until I took the 7.00am Airport Bus. Its a 30 minute drive to the airport 12km away. I will be getting there 3 hours before take off but I have spend all my NZ dollars and I am ready to hot the road.