Adrian Wilkins : Instrumental

22 September - 31 October 2016

An exhibition of musical instrument photography by


I was raised in the shadow of the Cadbury Chocolate Factory, in Birmingham, England. The distinctive aroma of cocoa hung on the breeze of a warm summer afternoon.

After I’d finished school, opportunity sent me to Yorkshire, to Surrey and then overseas to Southern California where I lived and worked for twenty years.

In 2003 my partner and I moved to the beautiful Whangarei Heads area of Northland New Zealand where we currently live.

When I was young, my father, a professor of Plant Biology and a keen amateur photographer, had a darkroom in which I learned to make prints of my early experiments with a camera. Watching an image gradually emerge on the wet paper was like magic to me. And the magic of the image, in the wider sense, the power of it, stays with me still.

The digital process eventually closed the darkrooms. My film equipment sat on the desk for a year, then in a drawer for a  year, before it was finally sold for peanuts. The story is a common one I’m sure. So it goes. The migration to computer brought new possibilities  including the smooth integration of graphics, thanks to faster machines and increasingly competent software packages. I signed up for a Graphic Design and Desktop Publishing course to be better able to make the most of the digital tools.

I have diverse interests. I studied horticulture and pursued a career in Arboriculture and still retain an affinity with trees and the landscape. I took classes on photographic technique and visual arts. I have enjoyed uncountable hours with music and motorcycles. I keep up with the general science journals–the study of the natural world– and read The New Yorker cover to cover.

We have had dogs and now just have a dog. In New Zealand we maintain a small olive grove and produce several varieties of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

The breadth of my experience over the years permeates the work that I do. Living and working in three countries has helped me to be observant, to look more closely, to see.