Yesterday I took the kids to the Dunedin Art Gallery. It’s quite a small Gallery, but they really do a great job of having interesting and constantly changing displays. They reserve one small annex for Frances Hodgkins alone, which is just fantastic, currently the theme there is her time in Morocco. If there’s one thing I really love about this gallery, aside from the beautiful pieces of art, is that they use the most extreme and bold colours on the walls. The main room is currently a deep electric blue, with side rooms in darkest royal purple, blood red, and the Hodgkins annex is currently sunflower yellow, very intense but quite stunning. Whenever I wander the rooms I am always taken aback by the confidance displayed in such bold use of colour, especially when so many gallerys like to stick to white for display purposes. It’s surprising how much the intense colours make the pictures stand out. Inevitably I leave the building wishing I had the boldness to experiment with such colours on my walls, and then out comes the whites and sandstones I seem to fall back on.
The kids loved it – although I would advise to anyone taking a wee girl to a gallery to check the “clonkiness factor” of her shoes first, as Mia’s boots seemed to reverberate like tap shoes in an empty hall. It can also be a bit of a challenge to continually ask a small child to not touch ANYTHING, and there seems to be a never-ending amount of staff members with glasses half way down their noses all ready to disapprove. Much to my surprise it was not Mia who got into trouble, it was me. Although I swear I checked for signs first (and couldn’t find any) I was pulled aside by one of the glasses wearing staff members and abruptly told that I was not allowed to take photographs (exact quote “excuse me, you can’t photograph the Cones”). Okay, sorry (and too late). “Cones” by Neil Dawson