About Dr Jo Burzynska

04Dr Jo Burzynska is a New Zealand-based sound artist, wine writer, researcher and curator. Her work in these areas has increasingly converged in the production of multisensory art and the design of immersive environments, which include the establishment of the world’s first ‘wine and sound’ bar. As a sound/multisensory artist she has exhibited, performed and released her work around the world, while in her role as an international wine critic and judge, she has written widely read wine columns and is the author of Wine Class: All You Need to Know About Wine in New Zealand (Random House).

Her installations and performances are regularly created at the intersection of the senses, often combining her specialisations of audition and the chemical senses (taste and olfaction). Recent years have seen her work on numerous projects that fuse multisensory art and science, which has involved research with leading figures in the fields of experimental psychology, cognitive neuroscience and sensory science. She was awarded a PhD for her interdisciplinary research that investigated sensory and aesthetic interactions between sound and flavour/aroma and their creative application.

Her art includes the participatory sound and wine work, Oenosthesia which, after its premiere at the Intereferenze FARM Festival in Tufo, Italy (2012), went on to be shown at Italy’s national museum of contemporary art, MAXXI in Rome; Studio Sienko in London and the Dunedin Public Art Gallery, Audio Foundation and Physics Room galleries in New Zealand. Her recent audio-olfactory work, La Chevelure, which transposes the symbolism of a Baudelaire poem into metaphorical mixtures of actual sounds and scent, was shown at the Institute for Art and Olfaction Los Angeles; Milieux Institute in Montreal and May Space Gallery in Sydney. Jo has also had her sound work released internationally on labels such as the solo album Avast! (CD) on Belgium’s Entr’acte and Touch (UK).

She was one of the founders and a curator of The Auricle Sonic Arts Gallery in Christchurch, New Zealand, the South Island’s only sonic arts gallery and public multichannel performance space. This included the world’s first dedicated wine and sound bar where she curated an “oenosthetic” wine list, in which wines were matched to the current exhibition and the music playlist she created for the space.

As a writer she is actively involved with communicating about sound art, experimental music and wine. She was the co-editor of Writing Around Sound and has written for the likes of the UK’s The Wire magazine and contributed chapters to books such as A Record Could Be Your Whole World, edited by Bruce Russell and Luke Wood (Ilam Press, 2024). In the area of wine, as well as writing the book Wine Class, she has edited a number of wine magazines; is the wine editor of the New Zealand Herald’s Viva magazine; continues to contribute to specialist wine publications around the world and is a senior wine show judge. She has also worked in radio, hosting a number of experimental radio shows, on the UK’s Resonance FM to Christchurch’s RDU, and as a wine commentator on Radio New Zealand.

She is currently based in Lyttelton, New Zealand.