High Country New Zealand; the Land, the People, the Seasons

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Antonia Steeg with Philip Temple
Publication date: October 2012

Many know New Zealand’s High Country for its majestically beautiful scenery – the snow-cloaked mountains, braided rivers and tussock grasslands shaped by millions of years of natural events and centuries of exploration and settlement by both Māori and Europeans. With its rich human heritage and mythology, the ever-changing High Country is central to the country’s psyche and identity.

Yet few have experienced day-to-day life in these remote regions. Regions where high-tech farming methods are used alongside tools an early settler would recognise, where animals play a central role, where hours are long and income can be short, and where everyday livelihoods are at the mercy of the weather.

Photographer Antonia Steeg began her work documenting the high country in 2008.

In her work she has driven over 120,000 kilometres by 4-wheel-drive, seen parts of the country few will ever reach, experienced wild extremes of weather and made more than 100 station visits, meeting and working alongside the people who live there. Of the tens of thousands of high-quality photographs she has taken, more than three hundred of the best are distilled into this, her first full-length book.

With an evocative and richly informative introduction by celebrated writer Philip Temple, High Country New Zealand is a visually stunning documentary of this unique place. 

Click here to hear Tina Shaw's review on National Radio, and to read other reviews of the book.


Antonia Steeg

Antonia Steeg is a professional photographer and artist with a passion for animals and the natural world. Born in Germany, in 2005, she followed her dream and moved to New Zealand’s South Island, where she lives with her husband and son.

Philip Temple

Philip Temple is an award-winning, internationally-published writer of fiction and non-fiction for all ages. He has won many distinguished awards and prizes, including a 2005 Prime Minister’s Award for Literary Achievement for non-fiction, and was the recipient of the 2003 Creative New Zealand Berlin Writers’ Residency.

Extent: 320 pp HB. Contains 350+ full-colour plates and b&w images.
Format: 256 × 320 mm