Sparks fly for art at gasworks

Dunedin builder and blacksmith Peter Mason operates a forge at the Dunedin Gasworks on Saturday,...
Dunedin builder and blacksmith Peter Mason operates a forge at the Dunedin Gasworks on Saturday, heating lime in a cast iron crucible. PHOTO: LINDA ROBERTSON
An innovative environmental arts event at the Dunedin Gasworks Museum is helping raise awareness of the way lime can be used in art and in architecture.

The event, titled ‘‘The Lime Burners’’, was the brainchild of Paekakariki artist and former Dunedin resident Tim Barlow, and began over the weekend.

Mr Barlow, who has a diploma in fine arts with honours from Otago Polytechnic, said the weekend activities had been "super successful", attracting more than 150 people.

Hands-on demonstrations covering hot lime mixing, traditional masonry techniques, fresco painting, sculpting, and polishing lime plasters were held at the museum on Saturday, including demonstrations of the use of the gasworks forge by Dunedin builder and blacksmith Peter Mason.

Mr Mason heated the forge to about 1100degC and showed how it could be used to heat lime in a cast iron crucible, which was then crushed into powder to make lime plaster.

The events, which continue with an exhibition at the museum from 11am to 3pm until next Sunday, have been organised in association with the Dunedin City Council’s environmental envoy programme, and supported by the Dunedin Dream Brokerage.

john.gibb@odt.co.nz

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