Melania Rodiga at work on a canva

Artist’s brush with Kaipara

by Paul Campbell

Mangawhai artist Melanie Rodiga opens her solo Kaipara Day and Night exhibition on Thursday, June 13 at the Moir Street gallery, during which she will be painting on-site.

Melanie’s 40-year career as an international film-maker could be characterised as looking at light. “Painting replicates the attentiveness of filmmaking and also frees me from the tyranny of it,” she says. Industrial filmmaking is the art of compromise, whereas painting is making art that aims to be free of compromise.”

In her large luminous oil paintings, Melanie says “living on the Kaipara, there is a strong sense of the natural world; however, modified it is. Landscape and light are always vibrant, dynamic and changing. They evoke strong responses. I paint to express my own response to the way light influences form and colour in the landscape.”

In her work, Melanie acknowledges other painters drawn to the west coast, artists such as Sarah McBeath, Mark Cross and Stanley Palmer. However, she often chooses Kaipara views that have not been painted before.

“Most of my paintings are the views I can see from my home at Oneriri — from a peninsula bordered by the Otamatea river. From there I can see Pukeareinga, Pukekaroro and the Brynderwyns in the north, over to Tanoa and Ngaupiko Point, and to the west, Whakapirau and Pahi.”

Gallery visitors will see Melanie painting the second of two large canvases in an opportunity to use the gallery as a working environment.

Mangawhai Artists Gallery is open at 45 Moir Street, Mangawhai Village Contact mangawhaiartists@gmail.com.