Favourite build­ing

Mary Kisler ad­mires sta­bles from 1883

HOME Magazine NZ - - Contents -

“This build­ing in Al­bert Park was orig­i­nally the sta­bles for a grand house on Princes Street that marked the city’s pros­per­ity in the late 19th cen­tury. The sta­bles were built in 1883 by Dr Charles Haines and could house at least six horses and two car­riages, with tackle and food for the an­i­mals (and pos­si­bly a sta­ble boy) kept in the loft above. One can imag­ine a car­riage pulling up to the man­sion in front to disperse its pas­sen­gers, be­fore the horses were led past the sy­n­a­gogue into Bowen St and up the ser­vice lane.

The form of the build­ing is sat­is­fy­ingly min­i­mal, its res­o­lute plain­ness speak­ing of a dif­fer­ent time, yet there is a hint of fri­vol­ity in the white brick bands that pick out the tops of the win­dows, and the swathes of Vir­ginia creeper that cling to the ir­reg­u­lar brick­work.

I first be­came aware of the build­ing as a young wo­man in­volved in Jump­ing Sun­days or­gan­ised by Tim Shad­bolt, among oth­ers, as part of on­go­ing protests against the Viet­nam War. I’m sure many peo­ple had no idea of the lit­tle piece of his­tory they were pass­ing as they raced up the hill and joined the crowd. To­day, the build­ing houses the Frank Sarge­son Centre and the Auck­land Art Gallery flat tucked in among the up­per eaves, and down­stairs is a gallery – but this view from the park gives no clue as to what now lies in­side.”

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from New Zealand

© PressReader. All rights reserved.