“South African Photographs”, David Goldblatt

openDemocracy Opendemocracy
15 April 2007

From 1952 David Goldblatt's pictures have documented the multiple realities of South African life, from its people to its cities and landscapes.

Beyond the immediate present there lies a deep awareness - transferred from photographer to viewer - of the history, social structures and balance of power of this unique country.

David Goldblatt won the "Hasselblad Award", the most important international prize for photography, in 2006.


For the openDemocracy slideshow of David Goldblatt's "South African photographs" exhibition click here.

The exhibition is currently showing at the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Zurich.


From the series 'The Transported of KwaNdebele – A South African Odyssey', 1989 Travellers from KwaNdebele buying weekly season tickets at ehe PUTCO bus depot in Marabastad, Pretoria, 1983. Gelatin-silver print, 50,8 x 61 cm. © David Goldblatt


From the series 'The Transported of KwaNdebele – A South African Odyssey', 1989 GOING HOME: Some on this bus will reach home at between 9:30 and 10 p.m and rise again the next morning at between 2:00 and 3:00 a.m., 1984. Note in 2006: The cycle still continues. Gelatin-silver print, 50,8 x 61 cm. © David Goldblatt


From the series 'South Africa: The Structure of Things Then', 1998 Speculative development by a property developer in putatively ‘authentic Cape Dutch' style, Agatha, Tzaneen, Transvaal, 10 April 1989. Gelatin-silver print, 40,5 x 50,8 cm. © David Goldblatt


From the series 'Intersections – Municipal Officials' Martin Klaase, mayor of the Kamiesberg Local Municipality in the council chamber at Garies, Northern Cape, 28 June 2004. Digital print on cotton rag paper in pigment inks, 42 x 60 cm. © David Goldblatt

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