Ramblings of a much published New Zealand author

31 January 2012

New Zealand Odyssey: Our Lady of the Snows, Franz Josef Glacier Township, Westland

'New Zealand Odyssey', published in 1989 by Heinemann, was authored by me, Don Donovan (who did the text and illustrations) and Euan Sarginson, who did the photography and design. In this series of blog posts, I will publish some of my drawings.

This, in 1989, was the first painting I ever did of this church. I did another, later, which appeared in my book Country Churches of New Zealand.

Our Lady of the Snows is designed like a Swiss church with a steep-pitched roof to shed snow. Having been dedicated, opened and blessed on 23 December 1951 it's not old, but it is different. Small and intimate, it has the atmosphere of an appropriate place in which to consign one's fate to one's maker before taking to the mountains.

In the porch are two St. Bernard windows, one depicts crossed skis and a shield containing a loaf of bread and a flask of brandy, the other has a ski pole and ice pick crossed, and a coiled rope.


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By Don Donovan