THE LIGHT OF GOD
After leaving school, Nathanael Provis first worked as a Jade carver and sculpturer for Christchurch Greenstone Products Ltd. It was here that he learnt to carve bone, and with this skill in hand, he started his very first business - Mahina Bone Products. Many of the neck-pendant designs were based on traditional and modern Maori designs. Nathanael sold his bone carvings at local craft markets and through New Zealand souvenir stores.
The catalogue was made from coloured cardboard and cut-out drawings
Nathanael carved a series of animals and pendant motifs in wax, which were cast in silver and used as masters for the creating of his pewter collection. The pewter was cast by Darren Rogers of Canterbury, and the items were sold in souvenir stores. Some of the pewter animals and pendants were given a high-gloss finish, while others were antiqued, and some gold-plated. Some animals were attached to polished river stones.
The catalogue, and an assortment of the pewter animals and jewellery
Nathanael recorded his first two piano albums with Candelight Promotions, and then went on to record several others under his own label - Provis Records. The best seller was a piano album entitled "Nathanael Provis plays Remembrance", featuring popular easy-listening piano solos like 'Remembrance', and 'The Robin's Return'. Nathanael also recorded albums with several other New Zealand artists, including Bob Salton, Jason Ward, and Paul Fletcher.
For more information on Nathanael's piano CD's, please refer to the 'music' section of this website.
Provis Records CDs and cassettes were mostly sold through mail-order and at concert performances
NATHANAEL & FRIENDS CONCERT SERIES:
Around the turn of the century, Nathanael Provis was introduced to retired soprano Noela Blackburn, and together with the help of other music lovers, they established the 'Nathanael & Friends' concert series. Each concert featured performances by both Nathanael & Noela, and often other entertainers were brought in to feature as guests. While the first concerts were held in private living rooms, church halls, and Working Mens Clubs, demand for seats grew and concerts were then held in the Music Centre Chapel Concert Hall. Three performances were also given in the Christchurch Town Hall's James Hay Theatre.
Concerts took place in various local venues and tickets were largely sold though mail & phone order and door sales. Above: A concert mail-order form, a concert promotion poster, and (far right) Noela Blackburn & Nathanael Provis after a performance.
PROVIS COMPUTERS LTD:
Nathanael's younger brother Stephen Provis was working from home as a second-hand computer retailer and repairer. Nathanael offered his help and together they set up a shop in Sydenham, Christchurch. Their shop was known for friendly service, and for the free chocolates customers received - although it has been suggested that Nathanael sometimes ate more chocolates than were given away!
The Provis Computers mascot & sticker, and (center) Stephen Provis & Nathanael pose for an advertisement.
WILDERNESS COUNTRY GALLERY:
While Nathanael was working with his brother at their computer store, he was also developing his skills as a landscape oil-painter. A number of his early works were painted out the back of this store, which he ultimately had renovated into a fine art gallery space. Nathanael's paintings were displayed here for some months, along with a selection of other local artists' works. His gallery then temporarily moved to Darfield, Canterbury.
These days, Nathanael's business interests are are mostly centered around art and property investment.
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