“Our Coastlines are A-Changing” Part One

Our friend and team member Rowdy Wylie is a man who loves country and we have been so privileged to be part of his many artistic journeys as he expresses his love of country in his paintings. Rowdy is also a man of the coast and the sea...

Ngarrindjerri Island (Granite Island) Victor Harbor by Rowdy Wylie ©

As Rowdy says: coastlines harbor great spots for walking... taking photos and taking in the atmosphere.... perhaps as a picnic with family and friends... maybe a quite reflective moment away from the city rat life.

The Bluff Encounter Bay Victor Harbor by Rowdy Wylie ©

A little while back Rowdy and I started a series on Fences, Posts and Gates and today's post slots in nicely to this theme because it is about a causeway - the causeway that links Ngarrindjerri Island (Granite Island) to the South Australian mainland.

Drone image taken of the new and old Causeway 23 December 2021 (1)

If you look carefully at the image above you will discern that there are two causeways - the old and the first stage of the new causeway completed at the end of 2021.

The Granite Island Causeway (the Causeway) is an iconic landmark with considerable heritage value. The Causeway, located 83 km south of Adelaide on the Fleurieu Peninsula, is the only link between Granite Island (Ngarrindjerri Island) and the mainland at Victor Harbor and is a site of cultural significance to the traditional owners of the area. The Causeway is also a popular tourist attraction, important to the local, regional and state economies.1

A personal reflection from Anne -

My first holiday out of my home state of Victoria was to South Australia when I was about 5 years old. And I can remember visiting Victor Harbor and having ride on the iconic horse drawn tram which went into operation in 1894 - a couple of years before I was born!!

The original Causeway was built in 1867, about 10 years after the colony of South Australia was established. To read about this click here.

Horse drawn tram on Ngarrindjerri Island (Granite Island), Victor Harbor South Australia Photo: John Wylie ©

But... time takes its toll and the old is being replaced with the new.
Previously, as Rowdy explains, these structures were all constructed from local hardwood timber.

The old causeway at Victor Harbor Photo: John Wylie ©

The beauty in the timber with its rich textures and colours blended in most perfectly with the natural environment.

Foreshore at Victor Harbor South Australia Photo: John Wylie ©

The charm of old landmarks and their environments as Rowdy defines them saw:

Generations of Australian families holidaying in beachside country towns over the Christmas/New Year holidays… and Easter long weekends… being drawn to the sunny… sandy beaches… the salt air environment...

Many seek out and venture to the organic… tactile appearance of the “old” magnificently “weathered” hardwood timber jetties… each with so much “individuality” and “character”… with decades of stories to tell …

Each Jetty has its own individual character and is uniquely engineered… in design and construction…. They are held together with lots of timber joints… columns… bearers… braces.. treads & balustrades….

These wonderful timber “master pieces” of magnificent appearance… highlight the “rusty iron” reinforcing… bolts... washers & nuts…. all the iron hardware can be seen rusting and “flowing” the “rusty stain” into the cracks of the “weathered” hardwood timbers….

Rapid Bay Jetty South Australia (2)

An array of “warm” wonderful colours ... achieving a natural earthy “rustic” appearance….

Adding to this charm is the “salt water bleaching” and “lichen moss” growing in the shadows… under the beams… out of the intense sun light…

Under the pier and out of the intense light Photo: Anne Newman ©

Rowdy's description continues:

The Jetty is definitely a historical landmark… showcasing a “master piece” of works… all telling the story of a challenging “life” of intense exposure to the elements within the “salty marine” atmospheric environment.

Jetties/wharfs are used as recreational fishing platforms…

Gone Fishing by Anne Newman ©

The loading of cargo ships with essential commodities i.e. grain.. wool… and minerals… also in some situations providing access to “off shore” Islands….

A little while back we went on a sea voyage with Rowdy and Nicolas Baudin and if you missed out...jump aboard by following the Bookmark link below...

Going to sea with Rowdy Wylie and Nicolas Baudin on the S.S. Casuarina
If you love sailing ships, as do I, this post is for you. Come aboard the SS Casuarina painted by Rowdy Wylie and also learn about Nicolas Baudin, French explorer.

Today we also welcome H.S.C. in Australia to the AnArt4Life blog - it is such a good day when we have a new subscriber and knowing that someone new shares our love of all things art.

And tomorrow we will return to contemplate the arrival of the new low maintenance jetty!!

1. dit.sa.gov.au
2. pinterest.com.au