A glorious new edition of Colin Wheeler's seminal books on the historic sheep stations of New Zealand
Between 1967 and 1972, Colin Wheeler visited 60 of New Zealand's historic sheep stations across the North and South Islands. Travelling thousands of kilometres with his wife, Phyllis, the pair went to places rarely seen by the outside world. It was a time when sheep farming was the most important agricultural industry in New Zealand, yet these stations remained some of the most isolated communities in the country.
Colin spent month after month drawing, painting and writing about what he saw and the people he met: the interiors of old cottages, blacksmith's shops, rabbiting huts, sod-walled school houses, grand homesteads, bailing hooks, sack needles, hand shears, wool wagons, shepherds, musterers and cooks. The Wheelers forded swift and treacherous rivers, hard against the main divide; stood for days in deep snow; sat in heavy frost; encountered sea-mist, heavy dews and fierce nor'westers.
Fifty years since the publication of Historic Sheep Stations of the South Island, this new edition features all three of Colin Wheeler's original books. It is a remarkable survey of our heartland and a unique record of New Zealand's back-country life.
About the Author
Colin Wheeler was born in Dunedin in 1919. On leaving school he took up commercial art, then taught at Waitaki Boys' High School in Oamaru, before studying at London's famous Camberwell College of Arts. He held many one-man exhibitions of his paintings and won several awards, including the prestigious Kelliher Art Prize, and other national art competitions. In 1987 he was a recipient of the Queen's Service Medal for services to art. He retired in Oamaru with his wife, Phyllis, where he continued painting and gardening until his death in 2012 at the age of 93.