Studio International (Elam) Organisation / Collective / Group


NameStudio International
ArtformVisual arts
Decades Active2010s, 2020s


Studio International is a student group at Elam School of Fine Arts, University of Auckland. Initially conceived as a supportive network for international students, migrants, and the children of migrants, the group’s remit expanded to become “a group for Elam students to connect and celebrate diversity.”

Studio International grew out of a support programme for international students called Let’s Talk Art, which was run by Joyce Campbell. Artist Yona Lee took over the programme in 2015 and continued to manage it while teaching at Elam, including renaming it Studio International in 2017. Between 2017 to 2019, the group was very active — presenting an annual exhibition, gathering to hear invited speakers, visiting other exhibitions around the city, and promoting the work of members and ex-members.

In an article about a group of artist-friends who connected through Studio International, writer Gabi Lardies described it as a “place to forge community and a sense of belonging in a place that may have otherwise been isolating.” Lardies quotes artist Qianye Lin: “Imagine you’re a Mandarin-speaking migrant in Auckland, and you’re an artist, and you’re also Queer,” Qianye says. For her, the group is “a little bit like a family born of desire, but at the same time, necessity.”

The group took part in the Macau Design Art Fair in 2015 through a partnership with Shanghai University and was funded to attend the Asian Aotearoa Arts Hui in Pōneke Wellington in 2018 by the hui organisers.


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Last updated: 25 February 2024 Suggest an Edit