Women’s Work is a unique exhibition celebrating the work of 21 women photographers from the Advertising and Illustrative Photographers’ Association (AIPA) running over four days from 6 March at the Ellen Melville Centre. Coinciding with International Women’s Day, Women’s Work is an opportunity to explore the female gaze as an alternative to the ubiquitous male perspectives that tend to dominate commercial and advertising photography.

AIPA Vice President Victoria Baldwin, who gathered together the group of women who produced the Women’s Work exhibition and associated events, said: “With this exhibition we really want to give people a nudge and make them question their assumptions.”

The 41 images from photographers including Mara Sommer, Sara Orme, Victoria Baldwin and others embody a wide range of themes and styles. Each photographer has her own unique approach to her work, yet together these images represent a distinctly female viewpoint.

Women's Work

Women make up the majority of photography students in NZ universities, up to 70-80% in some courses, however the number of women commercial photographers represented by photo agents in NZ is much lower, closer to 20%.

Wellington photographer Amber-Jayne Bain said: “It’s not just that women are not represented, it’s that women’s points of view aren’t represented. I feel like the exhibition is going to be a reminder that there is a different point of view.”

On International Woman’s Day (8 March, 11am-1pm) a panel discussion will bring together artists and industry professionals to discuss issues around the gender imbalance in the photographic industries. The conversation between photographer Sara Orme, Isobel Kerr-Newell of Saatchi & Saatchi, Geraldine Turney of Match Photographers, and Dr. Kaisa Wilson of Gender Tick promises to be lively and informative. Registrations required - click here to register

Sarah Orme said: “I've been in this industry for over 25 years and I'm not gonna lie, it's been really hard as a female. The female vision, up until recently, has been really ignored, and absolutely not understood or appreciated.”

Women’s Work is an opportunity to take a break from the male perspective and experience the world through a different lens: the female gaze.

Exhibition Schedule:

Photo Light Boxes in Freyberg Sqaure:

  • 1-16 March

Women's Work: A Different Lens:
- Pioneer Women's Hall (Ellen Melville Centre)

  • 6 & 7 March: 9am-6pm
  • 8 & 9 March: 9am-4pm

Women's Work: Panel Discussion on International Women's Day:
- Pioneer Women's Hall (Ellen Melville Centre)

Park for $2 per hour, to a maximum of $10 on evenings and weekends at the Victoria St car park. Find out more.

Last updated: 16 February 2020