• Vikky Alexander

PHOTO OP. is pleased to present Canadian artist Vikky Alexander’s seminal 1985 exhibition Between Dreaming and Living for the first time in Aotearoa.

The exhibition will also feature a new photographic print commissioned by PHOTO OP. Editions.

A new PHOTO OP. publication will accompany the exhibition, with texts by Ellen van Neerven and Emil McAvoy.

PHOTO OP. would like to acknowledge the support of Downs & Ross, New York.

Opening celebration Friday 10 February 5:00 - 7:00pm

Open Saturdays 11am – 2pm & by appointment

In the 1980s, I grew up on a diet of mass-media imagery from movies, television and magazines. This captivating image world shaped my understanding of the complexities and contradictions of adulthood. For me, Vikky Alexander’s 1985 photographic series Between Dreaming and Living recalls that time, when images seemed more intense, more real, than lived experience. Perhaps this condition is even more pronounced today, when our lives have become inseparable from images, and are mediated by ever-new forms of photographic representation and consumption.

A Canadian, Alexander was a key figure in appropriation art, alongside Pictures Generation figures such as Barbara Kruger, Louise Lawler, Sherrie Levine and Richard Prince. Extending surrealist strategies into the context of late capitalism, Alexander combined advertising and editorial images rephotographed from magazines. Each work in Between Dreaming and Living was produced by sandwiching two 35mm slides to print a new composite. Faces, bodies and landscapes are superimposed, suggesting emotional and symbolic associations, speaking to processes of memory, dream and fantasy.

Alexander’s composites act as a kind of Trojan Horse. They have an immediate seductive appeal, but the treatments—the way she reframes images, overlays them, and adds tints of vivid colour—are ambiguous and even unsettling. Suggesting that all is not as it appears, she draws attention to the power of mass-media representations in shaping fear and desire, personal and collective psychology. Her works suggest travel to exotic faraway places, but also through inner landscapes—between dreaming and living.

— Emil McAvoy

Opening Hours

  • Saturday 11am-2pm
  • and by appointment


  • Hosted by Skar Image Lab
  • 1 New Bond Street
  • Kingsland, Auckland