Friday, October 8, 2010
The Owl House in Nieu Bethesda
Posted by Benice Kok
The first town we stayed in during our road-trip in September, was Nieu Bethesda. Some may only know of its existence because of Helen Martins' & Koos Malgas' "Owl House". The town is quite off the beaten track and can only be accessed by dirt roads.
We wanted to stay there for a night so that we could visit the Owl House in the late afternoon and then again the next morning. Helen Martins had a passion for light and her home is testimony to that.
The house is small by most standards, but if you have a good camera and a sturdy tri-pod, you can easily spend 3 hours in the morning light and another 3 hours in the afternoon light there being surrounded by the most eerie and haunting light images.
In the garden are many cement statues, structures and enclaves made out of empty brown beer bottles.
Both Leon & I were fascinated by the play of light and the possibilities of photos we could take, using it as a "prop". Here I found a broken bottle and used it to frame the statues on the other side of the wall of bottles.
Leon took this photo of me where I peeked through from the outside - this is now one of my favourite photos!?
Miss Helen's story has a very sad ending and I urge you to use this link to read a little about a very creative soul and her passion for glass. These bottles are still filled with the glass bits that she collected with the hope of using them some day...
Hope you find this as fascinating as we did...