Poetry, art and Christchurch’s built heritage may seem an unlikely combination to some, but Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga Acting Director Southern, Christine Whybrew, will link all three in a public talk on November 20 (2-3pm at Te Whare Waiutuutu Kate Sheppard House).
Inspired by the exhibition Ursula Bethell: A Fine and Private Place currently running at Te Whare Waiutuutu Kate Sheppard House, the talk will explore some of the historic buildings associated with one of Canterbury’s most prominent woman artists and poets.
“The talk is titled – appropriately enough – ‘Our Small Fond Human Enclosures’ and I will be looking at some of the historic buildings in Canterbury associated with Ursula Bethell including her home in Cashmere, Rise Cottage,” says Christine.
“I will also talk about the Rainbow List Project which Heritage New Zealand Pouhere Taonga is undertaking to improve the diversity of RÄrangi KÅrero the New Zealand Heritage List by recognising places of significance to Aotearoa New Zealand’s LGBTTFQI+ community.”
Ursula Bethell (1874-1945) is recognised as a pivotal figure in New Zealand literature and the Christchurch arts community. Bethell, who initially published under the pseudonym Evelyn Hayes, settled in New Zealand in 1924 with her lifelong companion Effie Pollen. Their house Rise Cottage in Cashmere was the focus of her first poetry collection, From a garden in the Antipodes, which was published in 1929.
The current exhibition is a rare opportunity to view examples of Bethell’s work as an accomplished water-colour artist alongside archival papers from her literary life – with the talk providing the perfect opportunity for people to learn more about her connection to some of Canterbury’s heritage buildings.
Admission to public talk: $5. Bookings recommended, door sales may be available if not sold out prior.
To book: https://www.eventbrite.co.nz/e/our-small-fond-human-enclosures-ursula-bethell-tickets-451025478347