Photography and video are powerful tools for shaping perception
and effecting change, as is convincingly portrayed through the
images in this catalogue. Featuring the works of sixteen South
African photographers and video artists from 1950 to the present,
the catalogue was conceived to accompany the exhibition of the same
name at the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts. The cultural and
political turbulence of South Africa has lent particular urgency to
the role of these media. The eight sections of this catalogue
explore a broad spectrum of social and aesthetic themes that have
not been brought together in this way before in the United States
"Darkroom" focuses on four generations of artists, including
those who lived and worked primarily in South Africa during the
apartheid era (1948-1994) and a younger generation that has gained
wide international prominence since apartheid's end. The title
refers to both literal and metaphorical dark rooms: the actual
place where photography and video is made or seen; the artistic
isolation created by apartheid; and the psychological and physical
hardship of making meaningful work under threat of imprisonment,
torture, and exile.
The images appear as they are organized in the galleries:
eighty-six photographs, eight photo-based installations, and six
video installations. The artists include native South Africans and
long-term South African residents from Germany, the United States,
Contributing Artists: Roger Ballen * Ian Berry * David Goldblatt
* William Kentridge * Peter Magubane * Thando Mama * Senzeni
Marasela * Santu Mofokeng * Zweiethu Mthethwa * Robin Rhode *
Tracey Rose * Jurgen Schadeberg * Berni Searle * Andrew Tshabangu *
Nontsikeleio Veleko * Sue Williamson
"Distributed for the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts"
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