People Live Here

This is an essay I wrote for the Msunduzi Museum magazine ‘Ulwazi’, related to an exhibition of my photographs which they hosted and showed in their gallery space. The photographs were commissioned by the Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community and Social  Action (PACSA), a rare commission in today’s South Africa;

In about May 2014 the Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community and Social Action (PACSA) approached me with a request to participate in their annual Film Festival and produce an exhibition of still photographs, which would frame the festival, based on their theme of ‘People Live Here’.

 

We discussed the broad streams or thematic aspects, such as income generation; services such as electricity, water and sanitation; gender, youth, food and health, and based on these considerations around which PACSA delivered its services, the focus of the project evolved. I had carte blanche in who and where I photographed, which is every documentary photographers dream. PACSA were keen for the photographs to reflect more then their actual work and rather the context in which their work emerged and evolved. Continue reading

Of Migrants, Minions and Magnates

I begin the title of this presentation with migrants because in a sense that’s my story, my own personal experience of the world, and it would seem, that of so many other South Africans, and indeed other citizens of the world.

Migrancy, a defining experience worldwide, has been such for millennia, and seems especially so in our present globalised world. The rapid shifts in demographics play havoc with social planning and its various constructs. Mirrored to these shifting human movements, is that of rapidly shifting economies and finances, with finances in particular having become virtual. How we experience this ‘virtuality’, is all too real however. Continue reading