Auckland festival of photography

2016 Auckland festival of photography – June 2016


The 2016 Auckland festival of photography like many Australian photographic festival is very dependent on the enthusiasms and the energy of a small band of people, or more often than not, just one person.

In Auckland’s case that key person is Julia Durkin.

The whole program was kicking off while we were visiting Auckland in June. Over the first few days we managed to take in a few of the talk programs, a couple of the special exhibitions as well as some of the exhibitions taking place in City Gallery to coincide with the festival.

We were not going to be around in Auckland for the rest of the festival. But just a glance through the program and the experience of the first events indicated that this festival was a winner.


The 2016 Auckland festival of photography was a series of events that was about photography in its many forms. The festival would provide many opportunities for people to be engaged with works, with artists, with forums and with other events such as portfolio reviews.

A big congratulations to the director, Julia Durkin and her merry band of assistants and volunteers.

The festival is yet another that is run on very little resources. It is shame that city governments such the Auckland City Council does not get behind these events with real resources and allow them to become even greater events that would attract even more international attention.

This event was based very much on coordination. That is, besides the group of events that were organised and run by the festival, the other major task was to see as many exhibitions happen across Auckland in commercial galleries, in the main public gallery (Auckland City Gallery), the university gallery and then in as many places as possible – such as coffee shops.

Here’s the link to the programs – click here.

For me there were two highlights – and they were two of the presentations held in the city gallery.

One was the presentation on Sunday 5th June from the director of Indian Photography Festival, Aquin Mathews. Click here.




Here’s a couple of related links:

The wordpress page for the Indian photography festival – click here.

A link to a newspaper report on the 2015 Indian photography festival – click here.

Curiously there was an exhibition of the Indian work – but it was in the open air under another silo down in the Wynyard Quarter. I am not sure how long those works were going to last being only partly sheltered and open to the weather.





The real winner for me was the presentation Saturday 4th June  by Oh Soon-Hwa.




While many photographic artists seem to concentrate on the issues behind their work often without ensuring that there is a high standard of production in the final artwork – you could not say this of Soon-Hwa. The research and story that underpin her work is simply amazing – and she has then followed through with a carefully crafted and beautiful suite of photographs.

Click here for the festival information online about Soon-Hwa and here’s a link to her own webpages – click here. Strongly recommend you check out her projects.

The festival kicked off with an exhibition opening at the Silo  – click here


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