Artist: Joyce Campbell

  • 2 May 2024

"To be able to find complexity in an apparently exquisite scene is really important. We don’t live in an untroubled landscape and I’m not interested in picturing untroubled landscapes. I get to go back into parts of New Zealand that are pictured as pristine but are not pristine and open up our relationship to our landscape. "

Joyce Campbell

An artist working in photography, video and sculpture, Joyce Campbell has exhibited around the world, works between Los Angeles and Wairoa, teaches at Elam School of Fine Arts, and in 2016 was shortlisted for the Walters Prize.


"“The experience of those places is visceral and if you can produce work that conveys that visceral feeling, then that’s success. I don’t care if my work appears to the contemporary, internationalist, curatorial eye to be romantic or out of touch with the current aesthetic. If my audience is a bunch of people I hang out with in Auckland art galleries, that’s one thing. But if my audience happens to be in Wairoa, then my work isn’t going to look the same way. And I don’t buy the idea that that is less sophisticated.”


Words by: Anthony Byrt. Photography by: Toaki Okano.

Joyce Campbell’s interdisciplinary practice challenges the conventions and limitations of landscape representation. Harnessing a phenomenological power and sophistication, her work is simultaneously, and persistently, political. Campbell’s photographic engagements with land, water and place challenge the Romantic construction of landscape as genre, interrogating the systems of power so often embedded within them. 


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