Gallery makes way for hut

Forrester Gallery curator Else Mackenzie looks out from a mountain "hut" installed in the gallery...
Forrester Gallery curator Else Mackenzie looks out from a mountain "hut" installed in the gallery as part of an exhibition. Photo by Sally Rae.
The building of a mountain hut as part of an exhibition on global warming has meant a temporary revamp at the Forrester Gallery.

Jo Woolley's exhibition Vanishing Ice was inspired by her experiences tramping and climbing in the Southern Alps.

The "hut" is a central component of the exhibition and the entrance to the gallery has been temporarily reconfigured, with a wall erected, to house it.

The installation includes digital moving images projected on to the walls of the gallery and a soundtrack which aims to convey the visceral, sensory characteristics of disintegrating ice.

Visitors are encouraged to enter the partially soundproofed hut - empty except for a lantern - which contains text on the walls about global warming.

It was during one of her excursions into the Dart Glacier region that Woolley came across the shattered remains of a mountain hut that had been destroyed by an avalanche some years earlier.

With the help of a group of friends and the Department of Conservation, she recovered the hut remnants and installed them in her studio.

The rapid decline of the Dart Glacier and the recovered remains of the hut became influences for her research into huts, wilderness and glaciers and later grew into looking at the effects of global climate change.

Woolley will give a floor-talk at the gallery tomorrow at 4.30pm. The exhibition runs until January 18.


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