Artist gives paint­ing to Waihi Hos­pi­tal

Waihi Leader - - News - By ME­LANIE CAMOIN news@wai­hileader.co.nz

A renowned Coro­man­del artist has do­nated a paint­ing to Waihi Hos­pi­tal.

Richard Chrisp, 75, gifted a wa­ter­colour paint­ing to staff to thank them for their ser­vice.

Richard’s life is as colour­ful as his art, mainly im­pres­sion­ist scenes, land­scapes and an­i­mals.

Dur­ing his stay in Waihi, Richard built strong ties with lo­cal woman Irene Muriel Ritchie, 90, who died on Oc­to­ber 25.

“She and I were talk­ing about flow­ers and gar­dens. She was a keen gar­dener,” he said.

The artist said he apol­o­gises for “pinch­ing flow­ers in the neigh­bour­ing gar­dens” to cre­ate a bou­quet for Irene’s fu­neral.

“I went to col­lect flow­ers for Irene in my dress­ing gown at 5am. I had my se­ca­teurs with me. I hope I did not scare any­one.”

Ec­cen­tric­ity and ex­cite­ment have been part of the artist’s life. He’s been paint­ing since he was 12 and at­tended a board­ing school in Wan­ganui.

“For five years run­ning I won the art prize. I wanted to be a florist but my fa­ther would not let me.” He at­tended Vic­to­ria Uni­ver­sity and was film critic for the Uni­ver­sity news­pa­per for 10 years un­der the di­rec­tion of Cather­ine De la Roche, in­ter­na­tional writer on film. Richard was also work­ing for Na­tional Pub­lic­ity Stu­dio in Welling­ton.

“I loved writ­ing about the vin­tage French movies. My favourite was Jeanne Moreau — what a won­der­ful ac­tress. I met her in Paris a long time ago back­stage while she played in La Che­vauche´e sur le lac de Con­stance [The Ride Across Lake Con­stance].”

The pain­ter em­barked on a three-month trip by boat from Syd­ney to Mar­seille, France through Poly­ne­sia and Van­u­atu, and spent five years in Europe.

Back in New Zealand to be close to his ill par­ents, Richard started ex­hibit­ing his wa­ter­colours in Gis­borne where he was born, in Auck­land and Welling­ton gal­leries.

Richard’s work sells be­tween $500 to $950, Re­muera Art Gallery owner Scott Dar­gav­ille says.

Based in Coro­man­del, Richard is of Ma¯ori and Tahi­tian de­scent. He teamed up with bronze and ter­ra­cotta sculp­tor Uli Christof­fersen for a new ex­hi­bi­tion which runs un­til Fri­day, De­cem­ber 21, from 11am to 4pm, at Uli’s stu­dio. The pain­ter says he would be keen to have Waihi lo­cals visit.

Im­pres­sions III ex­hi­bi­tion: Free. Art for sale. Stu­dio is at 130 Pag­gitt Rd, Coro­man­del Town.

PHOTO / ME­LANIE CAMOIN.

Pain­ter Richard Chrisp (cen­tre) do­nated a paint­ing to Waihi Hos­pi­tal with (left) fa­cil­ity man­ager He­len Riesen, of­fice ad­min­is­tra­tor Cather­ine Tay­lor and for­mer Waihi Rest Home ac­tiv­ity co-or­di­na­tor Robyn Teague.

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