Interview: Andrea Hotere on her book The Vanishing Point

The Vanishing Point by Andrea Hotere is a brilliant, multi-layered historical art mystery thriller set in London in 1991 and Madrid in 1656. The novel boasts two main  protagonists, Alex Johns and the Infanta Margarita, with each character connected by mysteries surrounding one of the most famous paintings of all time, Las Meninas or ‘The Ladies-in-Waiting’ by Diego Velázquez.

Las Meninas is one of the most written about paintings of all time. It hangs in the Museo del Prado in Madrid and is one of the most enigmatic, mysterious and most talked about works of art of all time. It is superbly painted with almost photographic detail, featuring numerous objects and a large cast of figures in its composition — a true masterpiece. Many of these elements and details raise questions in themselves, however it is the questions it raises about reality, illusion, and the relationship between the figures in the composition and outside viewers that has fascinated admirers and writers on art for centuries.

In The Vanishing Point, Andrea Hotere takes some of the fascinating factual details and mysteries surrounding the painting and runs with them, creating a brilliant literary puzzle.

Andrea Hotere grew up in Ōtepoti, Dunedin, and lives in Tāmaki Makaurau, Auckland, with her family. She studied history at the University of Otago, journalism at the University of Canterbury and has worked as a historical researcher, journalist, TV producer and author.

We were thrilled when Andrea took time out from her very busy schedule to discuss The Vanishing Point, and we wish to extend our heartfelt thanks to her. For more information visit Ultimo Press.

This interview was done in conjunction with Caffeine and Aspirin, the arts and entertainment review show on Radioactive FM. You can hear the interview, as well borrow The Vanishing Point by following the links below.

The vanishing point / Hotere, Andrea
“Set against the backdrop of London in 1991 and Madrid in 1656 the novel follows the lives of two women, Alex Johns and the Infanta Margarita, who are connected by a quest to unravel the enigmatic secrets within an iconic painting.” (Adapted from Catalogue) Also available as an eBook.