In 2014, Jem Cresswell set out to spend time with humpback whales during their annual migration to their breeding grounds in Tonga. The artist was initially drawn to the whales for the subject’s sheer size and gentle nature and he has continued to return to Tonga, over three years, to capture intimate underwater visions of these complex and conscious animals. The resulting photographs are nothing short of spectacular.
An astonishing technical achievement, Cresswell has cemented his reputation as a great of underwater photography. Elegant in both composition and tonality, Cresswell’s images capture the scale and movement of these creatures with masterful control. The six artworks presented in this online exhibition have been selected from over 10,000 photographs taken across three individual expeditions.
These highly resolved images show more than Cresswell’s expert technique, they exhibit his practice as an exercise in anthropomorphism. These are portraits; human recognition of empathy, family and sentience, beautifully realised in large-scale print.
Originally from South Australia, Jem Cresswell is currently based in Sydney. His work has been broadly exhibited in curated exhibitions around Australia, in Kuwait, China and the USA.