Mary Macpherson

The photographs of Mary Macpherson – with a dash of poetry

Posts Tagged ‘Mary Macpherson photographer

New world old uses

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Reading the recent piece in The Spinoff about the looming effects of Queenstown’s tourist boom made me think of this photograph from my book Old New World.

Limited numbers of the book are available from Rim Books and Photospace Gallery.

Moa sculpture Queenstown

Queenstown, Otage, 2010 (sculpture by Robin Coleman)



Written by Mary Macpherson

14/12/2016 at 12:38 pm

New book

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Very excited to have received the designs for my new book Medical Daydreams from designer Spencer Levine. It’s unusual for me to be working with a designer so there’s anticipation and a lovely slight sense of shock at seeing someone else’s interpretation of your work (even if you did give a brief). But pink, green and yellow are my colours!

The work is from my iPhone photographs and I’ve taken it as an excuse to be someone-else as a photographer. A combination of romance and crime writer, perhaps?

More to come …


Written by Mary Macpherson

14/06/2016 at 9:44 pm

Up in Auckland

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Taking a break from my Wellington of the hills series, I started looking at my last set of Auckland work. For someone who photographs the social landscape of the built environment, Auckland always challenges me – but that’s part of why I’m interested in working there.

Auckland 2015

Auckland 2015 (image copyright Mary Macpherson)

Written by Mary Macpherson

13/01/2016 at 3:55 pm

House-hill image

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As part of the Wellington hills series I’m working on, I’ve been trying to make an image to express the ever-present house-hills. But feeling the desire and making the work you imagine, often involves quite a leap. However, out of the last expedition, finally something came back.

Wellington, hill, houses

Wellington 2015 (Image copyright Mary Macpherson)

Written by Mary Macpherson

09/08/2015 at 10:44 am

New work

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Back home now and into the routine (one of many) of reviewing photographs from my Wellington series. The weather is definitely ‘back home’ as well – here’s an image for the season.

Wellington series, Mary Macpherson

From the Wellington series (image copyright Mary Macpherson)

Written by Mary Macpherson

23/05/2015 at 11:53 am

Larry Sultan revisited

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Big thrill today to see the Larry Sultan retrospective at LACMA today. The show covered everything from his early conceptual work with Mike Mandel (eg Evidence and How to Read Music in One Evening) to the penetrating Home series, The Valley and his last work around the edges of LA suburbs.

We first saw Home in San Fran in the ’90s on our first visit to the States, so it seemed fitting to to see this great show after his death on our third trip. What a difference seeing the actual prints makes. I’ve always loved Home with Sultan’s charged photographs of his parents, interrogation of photography and gritty and accurate use of family and corporate snapshots and home movies. But seeing the Ed Ruscha inspired Evidence and earlier conceptual work made me love the humour of the series. And The Valley – work about the making of porn movies in suburban homes in LA – which I’d always been dissatisfied with in reproduction, was glorious in large prints (at last work that actually justified large format). Sultan was truly a master of portraits of artifice and intimacy. There was also a really interesting extended video interview with him.

The only work that didn’t quite convince was the last series about the edges of suburbia with hired and posed Mexican workers – yet to see posed figures in landscapes that really convince. But no matter the show is a treat and if any galleries in NZ had brains they would bring it over (not hinting or anything).

A quote from the show that Peter and I loved: ” I always thought of a great photograph as if some creature walked into my room: it’s like, how did you get there? What are you made of? It’s truly mysterious, no matter how many pictures I make, I have never depleted that quality of mystery. I am endlessly fascinated. And the more you try to control the world the less magic you get. It’s really about being open and surprised.”

A minor triumph – catching a bus there and back right up the main drag – despite the impression that only poor people and New Zealanders catch buses in LA, it can be done, all for $US3 for an over two hour trip (a special NZ price for when you don’t have the correct money).

Written by Mary Macpherson

04/04/2015 at 1:51 pm

Rooftops of Whanganui

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In the diverse collection of new images I’m working through there’s a few from Whanganui that may have something. Here’s one of them. I don’t know what it’s going to hold hands with, but perhaps that’s part of the journey.

Rooftops of Whanganui

Whanganui 2014 (image copyright Mary Macpherson)

Written by Mary Macpherson

23/11/2014 at 3:03 pm

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