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Walk into another world at Wellington’s PhotonFlux

By Lauren 4 Dec 2018

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Anton had been warned about Wellington’s “bad” weather, but he took a chance and thought his friends were lying after he arrived on one of the most beautiful days of the year.

“I’ve always had this theory that whenever the weather is bad, the people are more creative,” says Anton.

“As soon as I got to Cuba Street I knew this was the city for me and my partner, Nina.

“I was walking around in awe at the art, creativity and open-mindedness of those living in the capital. It didn’t take us long to settle in.”

IT guru and professional photographer Anton, and ex-professional dancer Nina grew up in South Africa and were after a change of scenery following a few years of working and living in Denmark.

Photonflux became an idea back in early 2016 Anton and Nina took a sabbatical and travelled around the Unites States in search for a concept, an idea, or something they both felt passionate about.

“We’ve always loved sci-fi, but we couldn’t find a sci-fi themed place on our US travels – so we decided to make our own. We brought the idea back to Wellington and opened New Zealand’s first sci-fi themed Eatery Drinkery Photography in the CBD.”

PhotonFlux opened in 2017 on Victoria St. Anton and Nina wanted to create a spot where people can feel safe – no matter the level of sci-fi pop culture knowledge and where creative humans can brainstorm and have fun.

“We wanted to create an eatery and ‘drinkery’ that harks back to our youth – 80s music, a daily time travel vibe, and a reminder of all our favourite movies – like Alien, Terminator and Bladerunner,” says Anton.

You can be forgiven if you think you’ve walked into another world at PhotonFlux. After a three-month fit out, the space has been transformed with repurposed elements like computer screens for menus, furniture and the coolest counter top you’ll see in Wellington.

Anton and Nina picked up on Wellington’s collaborative vibe early on and have since partnered with food providers like Lashings and Beat Kitchen, who have used their upstairs kitchen to deliver mouth-watering snacks to visitors. As a keen photographer, Anton also created an art gallery and exhibition space upstairs to showcase local artists and host a VR space. PhotonFlux also has an extensive array of sci-fi films in a converted fridge from AroVideo punters can enjoy and rent.

PhotonFlux also supports creativity in Wellington, with the 48 Hour Film Festival as well as the Terror-Fi Film Festival and the 78th World Science Fiction Convention in Wellington in 2020.

Anton and Nina’s passion for the arts and creating another world in the heart of the CBD make PhotonFlux a “golden land of opportunity and adventure” (Bladerunner, 1982).

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