"The White Terraces, Lake Rotomahana" - John Barr Clarke Hoyte
The vanished glory of The White Terraces, Lake Rotomahana. "The most remarkable of all spots on earth" Hochstetter 1859. A masterpiece painted by the most celebrated artist of his time.
Reproduced on Royal Linen Embossed Acid-Free Archival 300 gs stock. Limited to 1,000 copies, most of which have now sold.
Limited Edition Print Image Size 47 x 80 cm. Print size: 59 x 95 cm.
THE WHITE TERRACES on the edge of Lake Rotomahana, the Hot Lake, were destroyed in the great eruption of Mt. Tarawera in 1886. They rose to a height of 80ft. in a succession of steps covering seven and a half acres. White as alabaster with pools of azure blue, the terraces were hung with glistening chalcedonic stalactites from the steam-enshrouded geyser at the top, the highly mineralised water spilled from terrace to terrace, depositing its silica as it shimmered downwards to the lake. The edges of each step were embroidered with incrustations of unique beauty, much of this siliceous fretwork having the delicacy of lace.
The smaller Pink Terraces (depicted in the background) were ineffably beautiful with their colouration set amidst verdant forest, sunlit lake and blue sky. In certain lights the white silica of the larger terraces displayed opaline tints; and the Pink Terraces in sunshine were a roseate stairway with sapphire pools upon each glowing platform.
All visitors to the Terraces were moved to use superlatives when describing the matchless beauty and iridescent splendour of "the finest masterpiece of Nature's handiwork".
Within the space of a few dreadful hours after the eruption, nature completely obliterated the loveliest thing it had ever created.