Welcome to Festival Zone for late May 2024.

Festival 2024 launches NASA James Webb exhibition

 2024 Festival Zine Cover

Cover image: Pillars of Creation
(MIRI Image) by: NASA, ESA, CSA, STScI,
J. DePasquale (STScI), A. Pagan (STScI)

Deep Space, Queens Wharf Fence - 29 May – 30 June.

Thanks to NASA, and Queens Wharf Fence team, and Eke Panuku Development. And at Karanga Plaza on lightboxes as part of the 'Believe' theme.

Believe [whakapono] - Saturday 1st June - Panel discussion

Believe [whakapono] 2024 New

Auckland Festival of Photography 2024 has gathered a group of lens-based artists, photojournalists and ‘photography-manipulators’ whose oeuvre relies on or questions this fundamental, human trait of ‘belief.’ 

From the documentary images captured by NZME photojournalists on the beat through to raw data beamed — from 1.5 million kilometres away — down to earth by Nasa’s Webb Telescope. The old photojournalist adage “Pics or it didn’t happen,” or  “Seeing is believing,” has always been the mantra. From current affairs films examining the aftermath of Britain’s worst residential fire since WWII, to documenting the reality of protests across the Middle East during the “Arab Spring,” through to flora and seemingly innocent tourist spots from the comfort of cruise ships – filmmakers and photographers are now grappling with the rise of AI, convincing “deep fakes,” and the proliferation of “alternative” media – which now raises questions - can we believe in what we see?  How can we verify the veracity of the visual media we consume?

This year’s programme succinctly and overtly makes us question where our trust lies and what leaps of faith we are willing — or perhaps forced — to take in order to bridge the gap between our knowledge and the world of visual stimuli we consume daily and at unprecedented speeds.

Believe, or don’t; that is the question.

Panel discussion on the "Believe" theme with:

Sarah Palmer - Wish You Were Here - International photojournalist, Canada

Sarah Palmer is a photographer based in Toronto, Canada. Her work straddles the realm of journalism and fine art, questioning the conventional limits that both of these worlds hold for the viewer and artist alike. She explores pop culture and current events with a focus on the subcultures that these gatherings draw in. Full bio.

Sharron Ward is an Emmy, Royal Television Society & BAFTA award-winning documentary filmmaker from Aotearoa who has made observational documentaries and investigative films for the BBC, ITV, Channel 4 in the UK, Al Jazeera & The Guardian amongst others. She has made films documenting the Grenfell Tower Fire in London, the kidnapping of Yazidi women by the Islamic State in Iraq and has documented the Arab Spring in Egypt, Libya, and across the Middle East.  She is an Auckland based Director/Producer and cinematographer who now specialises in films focussed on the climate crisis, conservation and wildlife. More on Katalyst Productions

NZME Photojournalists -

Janette Dalley, Head of Visuals News, NZME + Michael Craig, NZ Herald/NZME Photographer, Voyager Media Award winning 'Photographer of the Year' 2024, documentary, photojournalism.

Janette Dalley, based in Auckland, New Zealand, is currently a NZ Herald News Director Visuals at New Zealand Herald, bringing experience from previous roles in London, and BAFTA. Janette Dalley holds a 2005 - 2007 MA in Film, Television and Visual Media @ University of London - Photojournalism team for NZ Herald.

Join us at 12pm to 1.30pm on Saturday 1st June, indoors at I Heart Lounge, NZME HQ, 2 Graham St, City. Arrive by 1145am for 12pm start, FREE, first come, first seated. Runs for 1 hour and 30 minutes, bring your own coffee, tea or lunch, session time includes Q + A session at end of discussion. Free.

Aotearoa Music Photo Award 2024 winners

Image Auckland is delighted to announce the winners of 2024 Music Photography Award - Whakaahua Puoro Toa

2024 1st Prize winner is - Brenna Gotje - 'Princess Chelsea band - Town Hall'. Congratulations to Brenna.

Judge Federico Monsalve said, "Capturing a single, fleeting moment when a musician is in an almost trance-like communion with its instrument. This photograph is delightful in its composition and its ability to contain an enigmatic burst of energy. The background light is almost heavenly both in its texture and directionality; the backdrop instruments and equipment appear as if officiating whatever primordial dance is going on in front of them while nearby, a pair of pants with fleeting butterflies add even more condensed, solidified movement to this tableau. I was instantly attracted to this raw image because, although intrinsically bound to the music it is trying to capture, it plays by its own rules to create an artwork in its own right."

Brenna wins $1250 in cash and her winning image will be part of future exhibitions of the 2024 AMPA.

Brenna stated, "Thanks so much! It was great just to have it on the website, its incredible validation, I just love photographing musicians… but to win… it is absolutely insane!"

Brenna Gotje, Princess Chelsea

2024 2nd Prize winner is - Tom Grut - Weyes Blood, performing at Powerstation. Congratulations to Tom.

Judge Federico Monsalve said, "This image’s superpower is its ability to capture a single, clear message: “ethereal.” Beyond theatrics or stage settings, a simple, mostly in-camera treatment clearly depicts the singer’s intent and gives a very clear indication as to the essence of her sound.  It is simple and minimal, restrained yet moody and it carries within it a rhythmic flow that fits the subject impeccably."

Tom stated, "Very stoked! Her music was so angelic that I was trying to capture some of that ethereal quality by playing around with shutter speeds and the way the light was reflecting against that white dress. It was all quite dreamy." Tom wins $500 in cash.

Tom Grut, Weyes Blood

For more judge Federico Monsalve's comments on the each of the prize winners, click the links above.

Thanks to all the photographers who took part, over 250 entries from across Aotearoa, from Marton, Unsworth Heights, Lyall Bay Wellington, Auckland, Christchurch, Dunedin, Papamoa, Hastings, Porirua, Kirikiriroa, Bay of Plenty, Whitianga, Waiheke Island, Gisborne, Rotorua. Go Kiwi music image makers!

TBP LongPrizes sponsored by The Bass Player Ltd and Pacific Culture and Arts Exchange Centre.

Ellen Melville - KLPA 2023 Winner & Finalists / Central Library screening of KLPA Directors Edit

Allison Plass; Rough Play

Allison Plass, USA; Rough Play - 1st prize KLPA 2023

Photobook Friday 2024

Auckland Festival of Photography presents Talking Culture - Photobook Friday.   The festival is pleased to bring to Auckland, for the 7th annual Photobook Friday event - come along to see presentations from NZ artists/photographers, who have published or are in the planning/design phase for their photography books over the past 12 months, while viewing a selection of these books in person.

Photobook Friday
This is an in-person onsite event in the Helen Clark Room at Ellen Melville Centre, no online participation available. Full schedule -

Presentations - 20 mins + Q&A 

Madeleine Slavick shares her book Town published by The Cuba Press, 2024.

Tushar Sharma is Founder, Director and Teacher at IMAgEN8.

Sheryl Campbell, Aotearoa Photobook Award joint winner 2022 for her Photobook droplet, shares her dummy book Cherryblond.


Johnny McCormack, Tāmaki Makaurau based photographer and designer in discussion with artist and writer Meighan Ellis; will present the photobook TEMPORAL.

Jon will discuss AI photography and his latest book: Legacy.

FREE, first come, first seated. Runs for 1 hour and 40 minutes, bring your coffee, lunch or energy bar too. Friday 7th June.

Adrian Cook - Wet Plate Portraits

Super long weekend momento and experience to get your own wet plate portrait done at this travelling darkroom and studio, costumes available, family friendly, fees apply for the portrait sittings, view the process for FREE. This weekend only.

 Adrian Cook; Wet Plate Portrait - Ellinger

Walking The Path - Abhi Chinniah

Radhika, Abhi Chinniah, 2021

Fine art and documentary photographer Abhi Chinniah showcases her portraits, which explore the journeys taken when settling in Aotearoa from elsewhere, away from the notion of home and in search of belonging. 24 May – 13 June, 7am – 6pm, Mondays to Fridays Guide Map Abhi Chinniah Exhibition. Image - Radhika, Abhi Chinniah, 2021
Artist walk and talk with Abhi starts at PWC Tower Lobby, near Spectra cafe, 15 Customs Streets West

Thurs 6 June: 1.30- 2.30pm
Public event, 50 min
Bookings at info.photo.festival@xtra.co.nz
This exhibition is proudly hosted by Precinct Properties throughout the lobbies of the PwC Tower, HSBC Tower, Aon Centre, Jarden House and Deloitte Centre.

Full 2024 Festival programme announced here.

Mark Lapwood -

On Waiheke is Birds of Waiheke / Nga Manu o Waiheke at Gallery Anomalous by Mark Lapwood, "This exhibition is a collection of images of New Zealand Native Birds, all captured in Flight on Waiheke Island where I live. Birds included are Kereru, Tui, Kingfisher and Heron". Starts Friday 31st May to 13 June. Image - Kereru Landing by Mark Lapwood.

 Mark Lapwood; Kereru Landing

Online Programme - The Shutter Room

Ellen Smith; Photobook

Curated by Angela Rowe and featuring work by Alan Squires, Anna Harding, Ashleigh Zimmerman, Ellen Smith, Faye’Ala MacFarlane, Gemma Keene, Jason Povey and Marcel Allen.

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