‘Control’ theme for 2018 Auckland Festival of Photography

Published: Wed 18 Apr 2018 10:20 AM
‘Control’ theme for 2018 Auckland Festival of Photography
Control is a key theme in 2018’s Auckland Festival of Photography, the 15th year the annual photography festival is providing Auckland audiences with world class exhibitions and events during its [May 31- June 22] three-week winter timeframe.
“Despite public funding paralysis in the country’s largest city, festival audiences have doubled in the past seven years” says public participation director Julia Durkin. “We keep hoping for increased investment for us to match our growing regional success.”
“Since 2004 AFP has made a major contribution to how Aucklanders enjoy cultural activities across the region. The festival is New Zealand’s largest free visual arts festival and we are proud, in our 15th year, to continue to present world class projects that highlight issues communities need to consider. We invite audiences to enjoy the nearly 100 exhibitions and events on offer that showcase the work of leading New Zealand and international photographers.”
AFP features twelve Control-themed exhibitions, eighteen ‘Core’ exhibitions and seventeen ‘Talking Culture’ events - including presentations by award-winning US photojournalist Maggie Steber, Argentinian artist Alejandro Chaskielberg and leading German political photographer Herlinde Koelbl [more details pages 2 and 3]. There are also forty-seven ‘Satellite’ exhibitions across the region – including a three-year study of the Waterview Tunnel project and solo and group shows [see p4]
Most of 2018’s Control-themed exhibitions are based at the AFP hub, Silo Park in Wynyard Quarter [details next page]. Many prompt reflections on how, as Control curator Gwen Lee describes it, “the rampant presence of photography” has invaded private and public realms. “Surveillance, aided by digitalization and satellites, propels questions about power underlying all forms of control, often belying the fact that control starts with one in power, administrating action on others.”
The popular Nikon Auckland Photo Day returns on 9 June. The 24-hour competition invites people to capture still or moving images of the Auckland region on one day. An outdoor exhibition at Queens Wharf and a digital Photo Map project will help share the the archive of more than 10,000 images entered since the annual competition began in 2004.
More highlights on pages 2-4 and further details at
For more information and interview opportunities, please contact:
Victor van Wetering, media liaison, Auckland Festival of Photography, (09) 849 6565
Julia Durkin, Auckland Festival of Photography, (09) 307 7055, 0274 735 443
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Auckland Festival of Photography 2018
Funding partners: Auckland Council, Foundation North, Creative New Zealand
Festival Sponsors: Baker Douglas, Leica, Mazda, Nikon
Community grants: : Creative Communities, COGS, The Lion Foundation, The Trusts, Blue Sky Trust,
International Partners: Australian High Commission, US Embassy of New Zealand, Asia New Zealand Foundation, Asia Pacific Photoforum, Head On, Argentinian Foreign Office, Kuala Lumpur Photo Awards, Daylight Books, PhotoLux, Alexia Foundation
Media release, April 2018 [2/4]:
Control highlights
“Not long after the invention of photography, photographs were used as evidence in court. The inherent nature of photography to capture what is before the camera has without doubt instilled a sense of definite hard truth, yet ambiguities besiege the realities behind these images. Fast forward to the 21st century with the technology advancement of the internet and its social media platforms, the rampant presence of photography has invaded both the private and public domains, leaving behind more questions than ever.” - Control curator Gwen Lee
Control: Silo 6, Silo Park Wynyard Qtr. Opens 6pm Thursday 31st May.
10.30am– 4.30pm until 19 June.
Jacob Burge – Face Off: We now have systems in place that are recording and storing our facial image without the need of a cooperating test subject. This rapid advance in technology and surveillance in general, has caused many to question our right to privacy and how information is obtained without our consent. Jacob Burge was born in Britain and now lives in Japan.
Woong Soak Teng – Ways to Tie Trees (2015-2016): Tree-staking, like our human instinct to control, is ubiquitous yet goes largely unnoticed. To construct a productive and aesthetic living environment for ourselves, nature has long been subjected to manipulation at the mercy of human hands. Woong Soak Teng’s explorations are concerned with the relationship between natural and urban elements.
Esther Hovers – False Positives: Esther Hovers is a Dutch artist whose practice investigates how power, politics and control are exercised through urban planning and the use of public space
Hou, I-Ting - Embroiderer's of the Past (2016 - 2017): Combining embroidery with digital images and video are Hou’s main medium - her works explore female labour conditions under social and economic systems from the past to today. Hou, I-Ting was born in Taiwan and lives in Taipei.
Chen Yan Cheng – Days at the Sea (2016): Yan Cheng’s work raises discussions of the developments of doubt, opposing, and banishment of oneself by two types of memories, text and photos, which represent the splitting of the self into two entities to adapt to system differences of the environment, culture, and values between conscript life and normal daily life.
Alex Plumb - Annual Commission by Baker Douglas
Alex Plumb in conversation with Gwen Lee – and other Control artists, Ellen Melville Centre, 2 June, 12.30pm.
2018’s commission features new work by Alex Plum, whose multi-channel video practice questions the psychological interplay between the subject, the viewer, and the site of performance. His work conveys a heightened everyday world that shifts between the real and the imaginary depths of our subconscious mind and the desires that shape us.
Herlinde Koelbl – Targets Presented in cooperation with the Goethe Institut
Silo 7 + Gantry walkway, Wynyard Qtr. Thursday 31 May-30 June. 8am – 6pm.
Herlinde Koelbl’s unique photography combines a journalistic documentary approach with high artistic standards. Targets features Koelbl’s photographs of military mechanical targets used to train soldiers in 30 countries - exhibited alongside portraits of the soldiers themselves, the living targets.
Panel discussion with Herlinde Koelbl (Germany), Gwen Lee (Singapore), Moshe Rosenzveig (Australia), Ollie Dale (NZ), Maggie Steber (USA), Enrico Stefanelli (Italy). Ellen Melville Centre, CBD. Sat 2 June, 2pm
In an age of relative personal freedom, how do we rationalise the increasing mechanisms of control?
Media release, April 2018 [3/4]:
International highlights
Alejandro Chaskielberg – Laberinto
(1-24 June, Freyberg Place CBD, artist’s talk Auckland Art Gallery 1.30pm, 3 June)
AFP presents Alejandro Chaskielberg’s Laberinto series of magical Patagonia landscapes as a CBD lightbox exhibition. The independent photographer, videographer and teacher has won international recognition for work that crosses the boundaries between document and art. Accolades include being named World Photographer of the Year 2011 by the World Photography Organization and receiving the Magnum Foundation’s BURN Emerging Photographer Grant in 2009.
Maggie Steber
(3 June, 3pm, Auckland Art Gallery Auditorium)
Photojournalist Maggie Steber (USA) has worked in 64 countries, focusing on humanitarian, cultural, and social stories. As well as holding a Leica Medal of Excellence, her honours include from the World Press Photo Foundation, the Overseas Press Club, Pictures of the Year, the Medal of Honor for Distinguished Service to Journalism from the University of Missouri, the Alicia Patterson and Ernst Haas Grant, and a Knight Foundation grant for the New American Newspaper project.
Ahmer Khan - Rohingya Crisis - Cox's Bazaar (15-22 June, Ellen Melville Centre)
Hundreds of thousands of Rohingya refugees have flooded into Bangladesh to flee an offensive by Myanmar’s military that the United Nations has described as the world’s “fastest developing refugee emergency … a textbook example of ethnic cleansing”. Most of the refugees now living in two sprawling camps across Cox’s Bazaar are aged under 14 years, lack proper nourishment and education. Ahmer Khan is an independent documentary photographer and journalist.
Head On Landscape Award (1-15 June, Metro Gallery, curator’s talk 11am 2 June)
An exhibition curated by Australian Head On founder and director Moshe Rosenzveig of award-winning contemporary images of the Australian continent. Supported by the Australian High Commission. Presented by AFP and Head On Photo Festival, partners in the Asia Pacific Photoforum.
Sandra Chen Weinstein - Seoul Searching (8-15 June, Ellen Melville Centre, artist’s talk 11am 9 June) During the 1948-1953 Korean war, the country was divided above the 38th parallel, with the militarily powerful yet economically crippled regime of North Korea on one side of the Demilitarized Zone and, on the other, South Korea which is currently undergoing a cultural and economic rebirth.
Kuala Lumpur Photo Awards (30 May-12 June, Bruce Mason Centre)
Curator’s talk (12pm 3 June, Auckland Art Gallery Auditorium)
Presented by AFP and KLPA. A selection of the KLPA winners - made by KLPA founder and director Steven V Lee, KLPA founder and director - now in its 10th year and one of the top recommended contests by the World Photography Organisation. Supported by Asia New Zealand. Steven V Lee is a Malaysian freelance photographer based in London who began as a documentary and travel photographer. His commercial portraiture and fashion work has graced the covers of various magazines, he has been involved in numerous philanthropic projects.
Flood: A Reason to Stay (20 June-13 July, Gallery One, Unitec Building 1)
Still photographs of graffiti signs and footage taken in New Orleans after hurricane Katrina. Includes a screening of the award-winning feature “A Reason to Stay” showing locals dealing with adversity.
Media release, April 2018 [4/4]:
Auckland highlights
Mary Macpherson - The Long View Auckland photographs 2014-2017 (29 May-22 July, The Pah Homestead, artist’s talk 2pm 10 June). In the 19th century artists like Alfred Sharpe and John Kinder were making images of Auckland as a city-in-progress. A hundred and fifty years later, the metropolis is still making and re-making itself, a process which Macpherson's photography records.
Nando Azevedo - The Resettlement Portraits (2-20 June, Auckland Central City Library)
Every year Aotearoa receives intakes of humanitarian migrants under United Nations resettlement quota, asylum seekers and family reunification programmes. Little is known about the people coming to restart their lives here as they become part of a more diverse New Zealand identity.
Photobook Friday (1 June, 12pm-3pm, Auckland City Library)
You are invited to share some wonderful photography stories, meet the artists, explore themes, and discuss the designs of the books themselves. Key speakers include: Gwen Lee (Singapore) on Steidl Book Award Asia; Margaret Samuels (NZ), presenting on behalf of the late Jocelyn Carlin, photographer of “Every Picture Tells A Story’; Allan McDonald (NZ), winner Photobook of the Year NZ 2017; Alejandro Chaskielberg (Argentina) on “Otsuchi Future Memories” and his recently published book, Laberinto; Woong Soak Teng (Steidl Book Award Asia winner) shares her “Ways to Tie Trees” photobook; and Enrico Stefanelli (Italy) PhotoLux director (Italy), who presents on his Photoboox Award - submissions are free of charge and open to all photographers or collectives.
Portfolio Reviews (4 June, 11am – 2pm, Auckland Art Gallery Boardroom)
Free educational and expert sessions where you can meet 1:1 to have your images seen by leading international and local experts – including Moshe Rosenzveig [director, Head On Photo Festival], Gwen Lee [curator and director, Singapore International Photography Festival], Enrico Stefanelli [director, PhotoLux, Italy], Maggie Steber [photojournalist, USA], Chris Traill, FNZIPP [NZ], Alejandro Chaskielberg [Argentina] and Steven V Lee [photographer & director, Kuala Lumpur Photo Awards].
AFP’s open access ethos is evident in projects such as Photobook Friday, Portfolio Reviews and Nikon Auckland Photo Day. The scale of AFP’s Satellite project also provides considerable support for emerging photographers keen to develop and exhibit their work. This year’s Satellite programme features forty-seven shows throughout the Auckland region, from north to south, east to west.
Tammy Williams & Gareth Moon – Into the Darkness: The Waterview Tunnel Project (13-21 June, Studio One Toi Tu): For three years during the Waterview Tunnel’s construction photographers Tammy Williams and Gareth Moon were given unprecedented access to capture the human aspect of one of New Zealand’s most ambitious engineering projects.
Raemon Matene - Te Raki (26 May-2 July, Franklin Arts Centre): In her first solo exhibition, photographer Raemon Matene (Ngā Puhi, Waikato-Tainui) celebrates the people of Te Raki ō Pukekohe and Nga Hau e Wha marae.
Charlie Yang - Same Space (29 May-17 June, Northart): “I explore the world of my birth, that in which I now live, and space in-between. In each world I share the dissonance of the mundane and the chasm between cultures. I hope my photographs convey the sheer weight of longing for home.”

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