Honorable Mention TIFA 2022 Fine Art / Still Life


  • Photographer
    Jocelyn Janon
  • Photo Date
    February 2021

Tinaku is a Te Reo Māori (Māori language) word that translates to "germinate" or "sprout" in English. The series depicts sprouting kūmara (sweet potato,) which appear levitating, drawn towards the sun by their sprouts, with leaves flourishing in the light. I see the sprouting kūmara as a metaphor for Aotearoa’s revitalisation of Te Reo Māori. The mauri (life force) of the growing kūmara. Kūmara, a way of seeing. Photography, a way of showing.

Photography is for me a means of meeting people and expressing my love for humans. I am particularly interested in the talented ones. The artists, the misfits, the “different” ones. The round pegs in square holes. In return, I have been lucky to photograph strong people who shared their weaknesses and beauty with me. In exchange, I am creating safe spaces to produce images with deep feelings and meaning. I am a French-born New Zealander [he/him/his] based in Auckland, NZ.