Posts Tagged ‘South African Photographs: David Goldblatt

15
Sep
10

Exhibition: ‘South African Photographs: David Goldblatt’ at The Jewish Museum, New York

Exhibition dates: 2nd May – 19th September 2010

.

Many thankx to the Jewish Museum in New York for allowing me to publish the photographs in the posting. Please click on the photographs for a larger version of the image.

.

.

.

David Goldblatt
Holdup in Hillbrow, Johannesburg, November 1963
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
A plot-holder with the daughter of a servant, Wheatlands, Randfontein, September 1962
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
The farmer’s wife, Fochville, 1965
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

“The Jewish Museum currently offers visitors an opportunity to see 150 black-and-white silver gelatin prints taken between 1948 and 2009 in South African Photographs: David Goldblatt. The photographs on display focus on South Africa’s human landscape in the apartheid and post-apartheid eras and are accompanied by Goldblatt’s own written commentary. Growing up in segregated South Africa, he witnessed the deep humiliation and discrimination suffered by blacks and experienced anti-Semitism personally.

Goldblatt’s photographs expose the complex and evolving nature of apartheid through the diversity and subtlety of his approach while instilling “…emotional complexity that rewards repeated viewing” (The New Yorker). Instead of documenting major political events or horrifying incidents of violence, he focuses on the details of daily life and the world of ordinary people, a world where the apartheid system penetrates every aspect of society. In his photographs you will find “great beauty and the most profound humanity” (The Wall Street Journal).

For more than half a century, David Goldblatt has been photographing his native South Africa, documenting the social, cultural and economic divides that characterize the country. Recipient of the 2009 Henri Cartier-Bresson Award and the prestigious 2006 Hasselblad Foundation International Award in Photography, David Goldblatt is his country’s most distinguished photographer.

Goldblatt’s photographs expose the complex and evolving nature of apartheid through the diversity and subtlety of his approach. He has not documented major political events or horrifying incidents of violence. Instead, he focuses on the details of daily life and the world of ordinary people, a world where the apartheid system penetrates every aspect of society. He is constantly searching for the substance beneath the surface of human situations. As Nadine Gordimer comments in the exhibition audio guide, Goldblatt captures “…these moments when everything that has happened to an individual is somehow in that image at that time. All the person has felt and known is contained, indeed, in the way he comports himself, the way he’s sitting, the way he looks, and the kind of setting in which he is.” Goldblatt frequently addresses a complex question in his work: how is it possible to be reasonable, decent, and law-abiding, and at the same time, complicit in and even actively supportive of a system that is fundamentally immoral and evil? Each photograph in this exhibition is an intimate portrayal of a culture living with racism and injustice [...]

.

.

David Goldblatt
Farmers at a cattle auction, Vryburg, 1965
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
Baby with childminders and dogs in the Alexandra Street Park, Hillbrow, Johannesburg, 1972
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
Three women at 39 Soper Road, Berea, Johannesburg, May 1972
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt has used his camera to explore South Africa’s mines; the descendants of seventeenth-century Dutch settlers called Afrikaners who were the architects of apartheid; life in Boksburg, a small middle-class white community; the Bantustans or “puppet states” in which blacks were forced to live; structures built for purposes ranging from shelter to commemoration; and Johannesburg, the city in which Goldblatt lives.

The photographer once wrote, “I am neither an activist nor a missionary. Yet I had begun to realize an involvement with this place and the people among whom I lived that would not be stilled and that I needed to grasp and probe. I wanted to explore the specifics of our lives, not in theories but in the grit and taste and touch of things, and to bring those specifics into that particular coherence that the camera both enables and demands.”

David Goldblatt has been photographing the changing political landscape of his country for more than five decades. He is descended from Lithuanian Jews who fled Europe in the 1890s to escape religious persecution. His father passed on to him, the artist said, “a strong sense of outrage at anything that smacked of racism.” Growing up in segregated South Africa, he witnessed the deep humiliation and discrimination suffered by blacks and experienced anti-Semitism personally. These experiences have informed his work.

Goldblatt’s written commentary is an essential part of his work and is presented throughout the exhibition in the texts and labels that accompany the photographs. A context room in the exhibition features a timeline juxtaposing events in South African history and David Goldblatt’s life; books published by the photographer; photography magazines that inspired him; a large map of South Africa; and a 22-minute excerpt of David Goldblatt: In Black and White, a 1985 film originally aired on Channel 4 Television in Great Britain.

The exhibition has been organized by The Jewish Museum’s Senior Curator, Susan Tumarkin Goodman.  All the works in the exhibition are silver gelatin prints on fiber-pressed paper.

.

About David Goldblatt

David Goldblatt was born in 1930, the youngest of the three sons of Eli and Olga Goldblatt. His grandparents arrived in South Africa from Lithuania around 1893, having fled the persecution of Jews in the Baltic countries. David’s paternal grandfather owned a general store in Randfontein, a gold-mining town near Johannesburg. Eli Goldblatt built the business into a respected men’s clothing store and for some years David assisted with the running of the shop when his father’s poor health necessitated it. But he was only biding his time. He had become interested in photography in high school, and after his father’s death in 1962, he sold the business to devote all of his time to being a photographer.”

Press release from The Jewish Museum website

.

.

David Goldblatt
Steven with Sight Seeing Bus, Doornfontein, Johannesburg, 1960
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
A farmer’s son with his nursemaid, Heimweeberg, Nietverdiend, 1964
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

David Goldblatt
Travellers from KwaNdebele buying their weekly tickets at the bus depot in Marabastad, Pretoria, February 1984
silver gelatin print on fiber-pressed paper
Courtesy of David Goldblatt and the Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg

.

.

The Jewish Museum
1109 5th Ave at 92nd St
New York NY 10128

Exhibition Galleries Opening hours:
Sun 11:00am – 5:45pm
Mon 11:00am – 5:45pm
Tue 11:00am – 5:45pm
Wed Closed
Thur 11:00am – 8:00pm
Fri 11:00am-5:45pm
Sat 11:00am – 5:45pm

Museum admission is $12.00 for adults, $10.00 for senior citizens, $7.50 for students, free for children under 12 and Jewish Museum members. Admission is free on Saturdays.

The Jewish Museum website

Bookmark and Share




Join 1,079 other followers

Follow Art_Blart on Twitter
Art Blart on Pinterest

For photographic services in Australia, Art Blart highly recommends CPL Digital (03) 8376 8376 cpldigital.com.au/

Marcus Bunyan black and white archive: ‘The Songs of Eternity’ 1994

Recent Posts

Lastest tweets

Dr Marcus Bunyan

Dr Marcus Bunyan is an Australian artist and writer. His work explores the boundaries of identity and place. He writes the Art Blart blog which reviews exhibitions in Melbourne, Australia and posts exhibitions from around the world. He has a Dr of Philosophy from RMIT University, Melbourne and is currently studying a Master of Art Curatorship at The University of Melbourne.

July 2014
M T W T F S S
« Jun    
 123456
78910111213
14151617181920
21222324252627
28293031  

Archives

Categories


Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,079 other followers