The Popeye, River Torrens, Adelaide

Two faces of Easter



Good Friday was almost unseasonably warm, like summer, and as everything was closed in Adelaide (pubs, shops, most restaurants) we picnicked by the beautiful River Torrens, right in the centre of the city by the University. Normally the river banks would be filled with students relaxing, socialising, revising or skipping lectures, but today it was mainly ourselves, a pelican and the Popeye tourist boat. The University Library was open however, and so was the Art Gallery (of South Australia) hosting one of its Friday First evenings, when the exhibitions are open, along with the bar and entertainment from a string quartet.

Being Easter, there were guided tours of artworks of religious significance, conducted by a Bishop no less. The gallery’s major exhibition is the Black Rose by Trent Parke, Australia’s only Magnum photographer. Shot on film, often under extremely challenging lighting conditions, the Black Rose is an emotive and often dark personal journey. With the low light and intensive enlargement, you can almost count the grains in the photographs, the (literally) dark mood appropriately sombre for Good Friday. One highly contrasting exhibit was his year of sunsets. Shot over Largs Bay every day for a year and from an identical viewpoint, this was a beautiful statement of the passing of time and the seasons that reminded me of my own (conceived independently) Instagram project of #Glenelgbeach365. His pictures were better though (ha! ha!), but reassuring to have experienced a least a touch of the same creative urge.

Last Easter we were in Melbourne, so I was surprised at the extent of everything here being closed, showing that tradition outlasts belief (in general society). Fortunately modern Australia is a multicultural society and the Chinatown restaurants on Gouger Street were all open.

The Saturday was warm and sunny, and I managed probably my last swim in the ocean for the season, but could feel the change. By Monday the temperature had dropped ten degrees and we had a violent hailstorm that sounded like a thousand unsynchronised drummers on the tin roof. British bank holiday weather! It made me feel at home.

See also Easter in Melbourne and #Glenelgbeach365.

2 comments on “Two faces of Easter”

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