Skip to main content
shihad-fish  Photo: Ian Jorgensen

Jon Too­good from Sihad in full voice.

Pub­lic cri­ti­cisms of the estab­lished New Zea­l­and music industry aside, Ian ‘Blink’ Jor­gensen might be best known for organ­ising the well-loved Camp A Low Hum music fest­iv­al dur­ing the late 2000s/early 2010s, and run­ning Wellington’s excel­lent Pup­pies music ven­ue between late 2012 and early 2014. How­ever, when I first met Ian 15 years ago, he was a high school ball pho­to­graph­er who’d just star­ted tak­ing pho­to­graphs at con­certs on the side.

Soon enough, he was pro­mot­ing his own con­certs under the A Low Hum ban­ner. With the con­certs came a DIY music ’zine and CD com­pil­a­tion series of the same name, monthly tours, and even books jam-packed with help­ful advice for young musi­cians, band man­agers and event pro­moters. In 2007, Ian threw his first Camp A Low Hum, in the pro­cess set­ting a new bench­mark for qual­ity music fest­ivals in New Zea­l­and. Along­side this shift came over­seas tour­ing with acts like Dis­astera­dio and Over The Atlantic.

From day one until now, Ian has been quietly and dili­gently doc­u­ment­ing the scenes, shows and tours he’s been involved in through the pho­to­graph­ic medi­um. In March, he cel­eb­rated the dec­ade-and-a-half of loc­al and over­seas cul­ture he’s been involved in with the release of A Move­ment, a ten-volume set of photo books span­ning 2000–15, and an accom­pa­ny­ing series of shows around the country.

Divided into volumes focused on spe­cif­ic bands and the scenes around them — for example, The Mint Chicks & The Under­ground, Shi­had & Wel­ling­ton Rock — and broad­er over­view edi­tions like Events & Fest­ivals, Tour­ing, etc., as a com­plete work the set func­tions on a num­ber of dif­fer­ent levels. For those involved in the scenes included, it’s an impress­ive set of nos­tal­gia-trig­gers. On the flip­side, it also serves as a visu­al primer on aspects of our recent music­al history.

Ian’s inten­tion with A Move­ment was to present the series as art books, and as such the col­lec­tion is delib­er­ately presen­ted devoid of stor­ies and com­ment­ary. Giv­en the length of time and depth of cul­ture covered, it’s hard to wish he’d paired his well-framed and ‑posed pho­to­graphy up with some writ­ten storytelling. Later this year, how­ever, Ian will release a com­pan­ion film titled Move­ment, in the pro­cess expand­ing the images presen­ted in the book set into liv­ing, breath­ing stor­ies of lives lived with­in music, both at home and on the road.

            The A Move­ment photo book series is avail­able for pur­chase indi­vidu­ally or as a boxed set at good record and book­stores around New Zealand.