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Bio:Janet Hafoka is a visual artist working primarily in the medium of photography. She uses her camera to draw out ideas relating to memory, identity and the imagination. In particular, memory and its fallibility interests her. She is intrigued by how deeply our past experiences can influence both the present and our future, in how we perceive, interpret and re-frame our experiences to others. In particular, how imagined narratives and omissions can become part of the storytelling process, often without us realising.

Since graduating with a Bachelor of Visual Arts from the University of Auckland, Janet has regularly participated in both solo and group exhibitions.

Artist statement


Current Exhibition


Ephemeral, a reflection on the impermanent and short lived


For centuries, many painters and more recently photographers have been inspired by the golden hour.  It is recognised as that brief but captivating time shortly after sunrise or before sunset when the sun casts a soft golden light. 


With a focus on transience, this exhibition looks in to the nature of our experiences and to what extent these are filtered through a lens of our choosing. Time and reflection are integral in the creative process.  Playing with the notion of nostalgia, these images question whether our experiences are actually as we remember, or perhaps more a representation of how we would like them to be.


In this investigation, the properties of the Claude Glass are explored. Named after French painter Claude Lorrain, this pre-photographic optical device consisted of a slightly convex blackened mirror, often pocket size. Of particular popularity in England in the late 18thand early 19th centuries, it was used by landscape painters seeking to capture the picturesque ideal. The artist would turn their back on the scene they sought to record and holding the glass up, paint from it’s reflection. It simplified tonal values and gave the landscape a golden glow, allowing them the day to capture what would usually have been just a few precious minutes.


Drawing on this history, these images also highlight the value in the fleeting and fragile in nature, and the momentary we are compelled to capture before it passes. 

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