Thursday, February 29, 2024

Old friends come together for cancer

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Artist Ron Gribble(left) and Ray Houghton with Ron’s original painting the mural posted at the top of Picton Street in Howick was copied from. Ron intends to auction the work off. Photo Wayne Martin

An auction of the original artwork of the Stockade Hill mural is raising funds for the Cancer Society. It brings together two old mates who met at the age of 5.

It’s the stuff of novels, we have the artist Ron Gribble, and his mate of 68 years Ray Houghton hace come together on behalf of Ray and Diane’s daughter who has cancer.

Ray Houghton was the professional Golfer at The Grange, Whitford Park Country Club and Pakuranga Golf Club.

Ron Gribble is the well-known artist who painted the murals at each end of Howick featuring figures, painted by Gribble, looking at paintings of old Howick scenes, and it has been in place at Rosscourt, on the corner of Fencible Drive and Cook St.

Two of the figures depicted were the artists daughters. Time and graffiti has taken its toll and the mural is past its prime.

But the mural at Stockade Hill, although damaged by boy racers over time, depicts looking down Cook St. circa 1910.

It was painted by Gribble from a black and white photo that features on the cover of the well- known book “Grey’s Folly” by Howick Historian Alan La Roche.

Gribble was forced to choose a size that was as large as his studio could accommodate which was 2400mm x 1200mm and scaled it to 7.6m x 2.5m

Once the scaled-up copy was completed, Gribble had it turned into sticky back labels strips and squeegeed them onto the site.

He deliberately painted some of the colours brighter than he needed to allow for fading but, he said, the vinyl performance has been outstanding.

Now that the scaled-down copy has done its job, it’s going to be auctioned off, to the Cancer Society and it is felt that a lot of businesses in the area would love to have it in their reception area.

There are many homes that have a wall that is 2400m x 1200m and could accommodate a now famous landmark painting.

The painting has been painted and sealed on a ridged MDF support, so it doesn’t need further support or frame.

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