Artist celebrates Wellington buildings - Regional News | Connecting Wellington
Hunters and Collectors by Stacey Fraser-Allen. | Issue 165

Hunters and Collectors by Stacey Fraser-Allen.

Artist celebrates Wellington buildings by Sam Hollis

Watercolourist Stacey Fraser-Allen has travelled most of her adult life. Born in Wales, she moved to New York at 18 and later visited Africa, Asia, and Australia. When she arrived in Wellington, she instantly felt a connection, and an intended two-week stay became permanent.

Part of that connection was sparked by Wellington’s varied architectural landscape, which has inspired A Celebration of Wellington Architecture, a series of watercolours you can see at Thistle Hall between the 21st and 27th of February.

Fraser-Allen has an eye for detail. She finds herself drawn towards the quirky, the worn-down, the buildings that appear as though they don’t belong to their surroundings.

“Houses in Wales are often uniform and similar in nature but here two houses next to each other can look completely different, it makes for a vibrant and exciting landscape,” she says.

“Buildings hold memories. It’s much more interesting to look at a building with some wear and tear, a bit of graffiti, and these are often interesting aspects for me.”

While she works hard to capture small details in her paintings, her style is balanced somewhere between realism and cartoony.

“Being Welsh, I grew up on the Roald Dahl classics like Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Those Quentin Blake illustrations showed a level of joy that captivated me as a child and very much inspired me.”

Fraser-Allen hopes A Celebration of Wellington Architecture will encourage people to learn a bit more about the buildings depicted, some of which sit mere minutes from the gallery itself. Her pieces will be accompanied by a short passage about the building’s history supplied by Wellington City Heritage.

To find out more about Fraser-Allen’s work, which includes prints and commissions, check out

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« Issue 165, February 15, 2022