New Zealand Nocturnes
A Story of the Places We Call Home
Colonial Villa – New Zealand Nocturnes,
Cody Ellingham, 2021
I returned to New Zealand in late 2019.
It was the place I had always known as home, but had been distant in my life for many years as I lived overseas exploring exotic cityscapes. As the Covid-19 situation unfolded I was forced to make a decision to stay or to leave New Zealand. This decision guided the next two years of my life and the creation of my biggest project yet.
Choosing to remain in New Zealand, I was confronted with the place I had left behind all those years ago. On one hand I saw the idyllic paradise of these islands as they appeared from the outside: long summers, friendly people, and beautiful scenery.
But on the other hand I knew that it all had a darker side to it. The reality of a rampant housing crisis creating the world's most unaffordable cities, the contested history of the land bound up in the very material of the buildings, and a society slowly cracking like the fault lines that run through the country.
The New Zealand Nocturnes Photographic Series emerged as I travelled up and down the country, capturing the architecture, places and moments that no one else saw. From abandoned farm houses along deserted country roads, decaying colonial villas reclaimed by the land, to dilapidated and lonely state houses, my images explore the story of the places we call home as they really are under the beautiful and mysterious glow of moonlight.
Living Room Lights – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
State House – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
Old Villa – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
Interior of Housing Project – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
Road Cones – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
Shuttered House – New Zealand Nocturnes, Cody Ellingham, 2021
Born 1991 in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand, Cody Ellingham lived in Japan for six years and published two photobooks, Danchi Dream and Bangkok Phosphors, during his time abroad focusing on urban environments and housing. His work has been exhibited in Japan, South Korean, Taiwan, and New Zealand.
Cody is self taught in photography and image making. His work explores the history of places, providence, and how meaning changes over time. His work focuses primarily on how structures and landscapes encompass the human experience.
Cody is the photographer of New Zealand Nocturnes.
Born in 1990 in Harare, Zimbabwe, Graham emigrated to Whanganui, New Zealand in 2005. He has been based in Wellington since 2012. Graham works in the Wellington arts community as a exhibition curator and event co-ordinator, with an ongoing interest in place and cultural memory as core tenets of his artistic concern.
He currently works at City Gallery Wellington and is the Associate Director of The Performance Arcade. Graham holds a Masters in Fine Art from Massey University.
Graham Frost is the curator for New Zealand Nocturnes series.
Limited-edition photographic prints from the New Zealand Nocturnes Series are avaialble.