A combined literary and art event at the CQ Hotel launched Wellington artist Phil Dickson’s new book ‘Phil Dickson’s Wellington’ and also opened his new exhibition, a collection of 50 drawings, watercolour and oil paintings of the Wellington region that illustrate the book.
Phil Dickson has for a long time been one of the pillars of Wellington’s art community, a key supporter and volunteer for the Wellington art club and Watercolour New Zealand and a member of the New Zealand Art Academy, where he is an elected artist member.
Phil is a keen walker, tramper and cyclist and has a strong interest in local geography and history. In ‘Phil Dickson’s Wellington’ he draws on this knowledge to write about some of his favourite places around the region, from the city to the Hutt and the Tararua ranges. One chapter is devoted to the Rimutuka Incline; its story as a railway and now a walkway, illustrated by an oil painting of walkers exiting one of the old tunnels and by three delicate pencil drawings, including one of the railway in operation.
Phil has for a long time been a close observer of our weather and operates a rain guage at his Brooklyn home. His study of the weather and many hours spent in the bush and walkways of the city are reflected in a masterly skill in rendering light in his watercolour and oil paintings. Land and cityscapes more than any other paintings stand or fall on the use of light. From his view of Wellington from Tinakori Hill where he catches a shaft of light illuminating the city while storm clouds brew in the distance, to a view up the Hutt River caught in an early morning glow, the exhibition and book are full of superb examples of his work.
The drawings and paintings that illustrate ‘Phil Dickson’s Wellington are now divided up and are being exhibited at The Kiwi Art House Gallery in Cuba St, the Kiwi Art House pop up Gallery at 39 The Terrace until 11 September, The Artspace Gallery Petone and the CQ Hotel in Cuba St.