Welcome to Festival Zone for December 2023.

Our Festival is delighted to announce our end of year achievements

Tony Tse; Fireworks Auckland Anniversary 2011

As we review our 20th anniversary edition, the Festival Trust as a charitable trust presented 10 exclusive outdoor exhibitions in key locations, 5 in venue exhibitions, offered 3 Awards in 2023 to reward and support NZ photographers, including the launch of legacy Kōwhai Residency programme for NZ exclusive artists to gain international experience in Tokyo, Japan. The Festival's joint programming included work by photographer's primarily Auckland based, with additional opportunities for NZ wide artists, and internationally we had exclusive work from Japan, Brazil, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, USA, China and Ukraine.

This year we also represented NZ photography at 4 international Festivals, UK's FORMAT, Australia's BIFB, Head On and Japan's Higashikawa Youth Photo Festival by either attendance, networking online, judging and promoting the Auckland Festival of Photography's programme. Our Festival founder/CEO, Julia Durkin, MNZM was also delighted to be a global nominator for the prestigious Leica Oskar Barnack Award in 2022 and 2023.

And to achieve all this the Festival team responded and communicated over 3000 emails and published 16 enewsletters to share our Festival news from January 2023 to end November! Plus secured growth across our digital communications on Instagram, Facebook, X formerly known as Twitter, and we have gifted 45 new native trees to be planted. This takes the total trees we have gifted to be planted to 139, these trees will help to remove about 32 tonnes of carbon dioxide from our atmosphere over 50 years.

Auckland Festival of Photography Trust hope you're all having a great start to this summer. Please remember to be water safe and savvy this summer. As all of us will spend some time at our incredible beaches in Auckland during the holidays, so make sure you play safe for everyone.

The Auckland Festival of Photography Trust wish all our dedicated team, supportive stakeholders, sponsors, galleries, photographers and international Festival partners a very good summer season and break over Christmas and New Year. (Image above from Auckland Photo Blog - Tony Tse; Fireworks Auckland Anniversary 2011).

Kōwhai Residency News

The Kōwhai Residency in Yoga, is our new programme offering NZ artists an excellent opportunity for a comprehensive learning experience in a large, vibrant, multi-cultural city, Tokyo and we have provided our 2nd placement with the perfect step for an international encounter in Japan to soak up the city and also gain knowledge from Japanese practitioners. We are delighted to announce our current artist in residence, Jenna Eriksen has been having an inspiring and transformational time in Tokyo and exploring the country and the arts scene. She sent us this update on her creator residency -

"It’s been non-stop since I arrived in Tokyo, meeting with Ihiro Hayami, Director of TIP. On the first day, I explained what I was interested in discovering, so we mapped out some ideas for the places I could go to immerse myself in all things nature, history, art and culture. Since then I have travelled across four different regions of Japan; Tokyo, Tochigi, Kanagawa and Kagoshima Prefectures. I have been drawn to these specific places as they trail along the evolution of Japan as we know it. From the Deep South all the way to the electric colourful soul of the country, Tokyo and beyond. I have been able to experience a vast array of artists, galleries and museums. Learning more about my interest in Nihonga - Japanese pictures, the sense of movement and colour used from classical paintings to contemporary pieces.

Jenna Eriksen; Portrait 3 Taxi

Throughout the residency, I have discovered the delight of Kiku Matsuri, a dedicated autumn festival to the Chrysanthemum flower, Japan's national flower. My imagination started to spark seeing all these incredible live species and the awe-inspiring scale of thousands of blooms. Visiting Yushima Tenmangū shrine is where I had a chance encounter with Takako Fujiwara a chrysanthemum gardener, 5 days later I was up at 4 am to get to the shrine at dawn as I was allowed to pick some of the flowers at the end of the festival. This surreal experience after admiring them from afar gave me a sparkly feeling and I knew that things were unfolding creatively by following my instinct.

I’m excited to exhibit my new work in progress, “Kiku No Kami” at 72 Gallery, Kyobashi, Tokyo before I return home to Aotearoa. With much anticipation of where I can take this collection of new work, I can’t wait to share the knowledge and fascination of this incredible flower, its meaning, historical influence and the story behind these creations of around 80 litres of chrysanthemums." - Jenna Eriksen.

We're thrilled to end our year on such a positive outcome for NZ photography excellence. Congratulations to Jenna for her hard work and talent creating this new body of work in Tokyo, Japan. Her exhibition runs from 13th to 17th December. We will update on where you can see this work in Auckland next year.

Kowhai Residency; Kiku No Kami - Jenna Eriksen


Cruise along to Queens Wharf, Auckland

Ans Westra; Queens Wharf Fence Exhibition

On now at Queens Wharf, downtown by the Ferry terminal, is our tribute Festival show to Ans Westra, CNZM. Cruise ships park up to drop off eager viewers! Take in some of New Zealand's history, by Ans Westra CNZM (1936 – 2023). Ans was a pioneer of documentary photography and one of the first women to work in this area in Aotearoa New Zealand. Supported by Suite Gallery. Thanks to the Lion Foundation and Eke Panuku.
Eke Panuku logo  Suite Gallery  

Call For Submissions 2024

Our Festival's official call for submissions/registrations for the 2024 Auckland Festival of Photography will begin on 17th January through to mid-March 2024. More on our new theme 'Believe' [whakapono] read here.

Get planning and join us for the 21st edition of the Festival.  Your participation can be "In Venue" "Online" or "Outdoors". Talks, events, book launches, pub quiz, performance projections and everything in between is invited to take part. Our joint programme model has been in place since 2004 allowing for full creative freedoms with work presented by artists, curators, groups and dealer galleries based in NZ how they and where they choose to show not us, we provide inclusion with our Festival (not venues). More here on how to participate.
Due to the cost of living crisis we have reduced our admin fee to help out a little.
Gavin Tasker; Charlie Bear enjoys Narrow Neck Beach

(Gavin Tasker; Charlie bear enjoys Narrow Neck Beach, Auckland. Charlie is from Canada. Image on the Auckland Photo Blog archive.)

Call for Business sponsors

  • Sponsors who understand the value of this type of marketing. Whether you’ve sponsored an event before or not, we can help lift your brand, big or small so that the investment will pay off no matter what.
  • Sponsors whose audience matches ours in both demographics and interests. It’s impossible to completely align with any one brand, but we can definitely pick out key areas and projects worth highlighting during the Festival and provide exclusivity to sponsors who want them.
  • Sponsors focused on event ROI. Naming sponsors like to brand their names on an event and call it a day. But to fully get the most out of the partnership, you’ll want to reach out to our demographics who understand it’s a two-way street. We can tailor Awards or one-off events to suit your marketing plans and interactions.

We have been fortunate to work with many sponsors over our 20 years, some for very long partnerships, others on short campaigns, and due to shifting needs, pandemics and change of ownership of partner companies' we are now seeking a new raft of sponsors for both financial support as well as offer of product placements, pro bono services. To find out if we are a good fit for your business please get in touch with the Festival Trust and we can take it from there. Previous business supporters include Sacred Hill, Olympus, Fujifilm, Mazda, HP, Nikon, Gravity Coffee, winesearcher.com, Huawei, Leica, Bank of India, Triangle TV, Momento Books, NZ Bus, City Rail Link Alliance, Heart of The City, Takapuna Business Association, Unitec Te Whare Wananga o Wairaka, Baker & Douglas Publishers, so we are an experienced team and flexible to work with different and diverse sectors to meet mutually beneficial outcomes.

As part of our 'Future Proofing The Festival" strategic pillar, we are delighted to announce a fiscal sponsorship agreement with Daylight Foundation, based in New York which will allow US based foundations, corporates and individuals exclusively to make contributions to the Auckland Festival of Photography whilst enjoying the IRS tax deductible benefits available in the USA. Please contact us via our communications for more details and the minimum US$ commitments needed.

Daylight Logo


Donate $20 to support the work we do, all donations are NZ tax credit eligible via our Give A Little page and can be made monthly to help keep us afloat in these challenging Covid recovery times.

All donations received go towards the ongoing sustainability of the annual Festival activities.

The Trust is registered with the Charities Commission No: CC38839.


The Festival team works all year-round creating opportunities so that photographers from every genre can present their new work. We provide and maintain the platform, profile and network necessary to present you with the best opportunities to showcase photography in our annual Festival.

Festival exhibitors can have the opportunity to join the 2024 community and be part of a Festival that showcases both international and national artists at diverse stages of their careers. All funds received as admin fees go towards the ongoing sustainability of the annual Festival and associated activities.

Ten Dollar note

Please get in touch if you have any questions, we're here on board for you until 22 Dec and then back in office from January 8th. We wish everyone a pleasant Festive season.

We look forwards to 2024!

2023 Festival stats

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