|A section of the Driftwood Wall mosaic in the Humboldt Room of the Homestead Building at Camp Glenorchy
This is another essay about one of the many projects I worked on while I was at Camp Glenorchy, north of Queenstown on the South Island of New Zealand. The area is one of spectacular beauty, which was the primary inspiration for the things that I built there.
|Driftwood washed up on the shore of Lake Wakatipu at 25 Mile Creek
This was followed seven years later by the commission of the Halls Hill Labyrinth:
A couple of years after completing the Labyrinth I was brought to New Zealand to work on Camp Glenorchy. I spent 6 months, starting in November of 2016, and then returned the following November for another 6 months.
|An article about Camp Glenorchy in Mindfood Magazine
|A stone and driftwood mosaic by Lew French
|The wall slated to become a driftwood mosaic
|A mixture of various painted and natural finish boards artfully collaged by Matt Hood in to the walls and trim of the Humboldt Room. Light fixtures, wryly nicknamed "Dan's Cans" hang from the ceiling.
|A prototype panel by Matt Hood in a window niche, with an ammonite fossil on the ledge
I had been collecting driftwood for some time, including along the West and South coasts of the island during exploratory adventures. Whenever I found a cool looking piece of wood on the beach I would carry it back to my truck to add to the pile. The thing about large mosaics is that you need a lot of material to work with, more than you will actually use because its the ones that fit well that make the final cut. You have to have great patience and perseverance to manifest this kind of art.
|Beautiful wood collected from the shoreline near Kinloch on Lake Wakatipu
|Temporary mock up of a section of driftwood mosaic for the dedication ceremonies
|Driftwood naturally piled along the lakeshore by the current of the Dart River
|A lush mixed forest of Red Beech (Fuscospora fusca) and Totara (Podocarpus totara) with an understory of Coprosma sp, Pittosporum sp, and many ferns along the Routeburn River
The piles of wood grew to the point that it was hard to get to my door and I had to clear paths to keep from tripping and falling at night.
|Matt and I were like beavers once we started collecting driftwood
|A truck full of driftwood treasure. There is so much that you couldn't tell we had been there.
|Wood and stone interconnected to create eyes
It was suggested by a woman with Maori ancestry working on the project that we allude to the Sleeping Giant in some way with the mosaic. I also had in my mind that a number of forest and water spirits intertwined in the work would as a whole would represent the spirit the giant.
|Tourists have made teepees with driftwood on the beach at 25 Mile Creek on Lake Wakatipu
|Working on a panel that would fit in a strip by the doors
|Matt Hood trimming the edges
|The first panel in place
|Felted wool pieces beautifully appliqued to make a panel of the braided Dart River by local artist Amanda Hasselman
|A close up view of the panel on the left side of the doors
|A panel made to fit over the doors.
|Fitting panels around the window and Exit sign
|Maori wood carving
in the Te Papa Museum
|Getting ready to fill in another section of the gable
|Closing in the final triangular sections of the gable on the sissorlift
|A Paua Shell in the Eye of the Mountain
|Driftwood washed up on the lakeshore near Kinloch
|The Sleeping Giant rippling on the waters of Lake Wakatipu