250213: Haus der Kunst - The rise and fall of apartheid: Photography and bureaucracy of everyday life

Haus der Kunst The rise and fall of apartheid: Photography and bureaucracy of everyday life 15.02.2013 - 26.05.2013 "We dreamt of a Rainbow Nation" By Matthais Kampmann "I was completely perplexed when I arrived in South Africa in 1950", recalls the photographer, Jürgen Schadeberg, describing his impressions. The German, who had learnt his handicraft from the bottom up at the dpa, had grown apart from his mother country. He'd seen it all: the deportation of the Jews – and he knew about the concentration camps. At 19, he wanted to get out. Because his mother had emigrated there, South Africa seemed the obvious place to go. "It was a strange situation which I did not understand at the beginning. It seemed idiotic to me. "White Laundry" was written on a notice board. I asked myself whether there was a separate one for black laundry? At any rate, I jumped out of the frying pan and into the fire." The well-known photographer-journalist describes his perception of his early days in the country, which was enough reason for him to become involved in the fight against racial segregation. Through their photographs, he and his colleagues fought against apartheid, which had come into force following the election of the National Party on the 26th of May 1948. And that's what the gigantic exhibition (ca. 500 photographs) in Munich's House of Art, "The rise and fall of apartheid: photography and bureaucracy of everyday life", is all about. Videos by William Kentridge, works by Adrian Piper or Hans Haacke reveal glimpses of the inner regions of an artificially divided society. But the pictures and documents are not just a kaleidoscope of horror – and that’s what intensifies the project. It’s the horrifying magnitude of contempt for mankind in everyday life that becomes apparent. Gisele Wulfsohn (1957-2011), a South African photographer, photographed a white mother with her three children on the beach. In between them, stands a black housekeeper with folded arms, gazing at the sea. The attractive, suntanned woman smiles at her attendants. Whilst the white people in the picture are recognisable as individuals, there's nothing individual to indicate the identity of the servant. Only her dress indicates her low status in the unequal society. That's the language of a picture, which couldn't be more explicit in spite of all its subtlety. Schadeberg, born 1931, has long been working for Drum, an illustrated magazine by whites for black South Africans, founded by an English adventurer with idealism to show apartheid for what it was; the expression of a fascist regime with contempt for mankind. "Until Drum came, there was no illustrated magazine in South Africa", said the photographer who still shoots present-day happenings with his Leica. His courageous reports on the partisanship of those excluded, and also portraits of artists such as the great singer, Miriam Makeba, made Schadeberg a target for suspicion. "In 1964, the special police were chasing me and so I emigrated again – even though Germans were actually treated with caution. But I pre-empted them." In the end, Schadeberg remained overseas for 20 years, photographing extensively for Time Magazine. On his return in 1985, he and his wife made films for the BBC. Was he happy in 1990 when the end of apartheid finally came? "We were so stupid", he reflects. "We dreamt about the Rainbow Nation, but reality soon showed itself in a different light." The exhibition also evidences the civil war – the bloody rivalry between the ANC and the Inkartha Freedom Party (IFP). Not only are videos of the Nelson Mandela Freedom Concert shown but also the sensational speech given by President Frederik Willem de Klerk in 1990 when he pardoned the black politician. The "Bang Bang Club" consisting of the photographers Kevin Carter, Greg Marinovich, Ken Osterbroek and João Silva documents the violent unrest in the townships between the years 1990 and 1994. Another master and former assistant to Schadeberg, Dr. Peter Magubane, who was imprisoned and spent 586 days in solitary confinement, says: “the world wouldn't have believed what was happening if it hadn't been made public.” He never had any difficulty in selling his pictures. The exhibition displays the history of apartheid chronologically and documents attest to the high degree of publicity given to the theme at that time. In the magazine Look, Robert F. Kennedy writes about his experiences in South Africa: "A country with great promise and potential, ambition and achievement but also a land of oppression and sadness, darkness and brutality." This exhibition is a must-see this spring. Memories will be evoked when you see pictures such as Peter Magubane's The Green Car from 1976. In this "horror vehicle", the police drove through Soweto on the day of the revolt shooting randomly at black passers-by. And then the period of peaceful resistance based on the example of Mahatma Ghandi, when the lives of the blacks were completely bureaucratized. Passports were burnt as a result, but the civil defiance didn't help. The exhibition shows the horrific massacre in Sharpeville in the 60's. And it also shows the Boers at the so-called "Kruger Day" in 1988 in the photographs by Gideon Mendel. Your blood runs cold when you see the swastika-like flag and the smirking of the girl holding it out of the car window. Haus der Kunst 80538 Munich, Prinzregentenstrasse 1 Tel: +49 (0)89 21127-113 Fax: +49 (0)89 21127-157 email: mail@hausderkunst.de http://www.hausderkunst.de/ Opening hours: Mon – Sun 10.00 – 20.00 hours, Thu 10.00 – 22.00 hours

Haus der Kunst München
80538 München, Prinzregentenstrasse 1
Tel: +49 (0)89 21127-113, Fax: +49 (0)89 21127-157
Email: mail@hausderkunst.de
Öffnungszeiten: Mo – So 10.00 – 20.00, Do 10.00 – 22.00

Ihre Meinung

Noch kein Posting in diesem Forum

Das artmagazine bietet allen LeserInnen die Möglichkeit, ihre Meinung zu Artikeln, Ausstellungen und Themen abzugeben. Das artmagazine übernimmt keine Verantwortung für den Inhalt der abgegebenen Meinungen, behält sich aber vor, Beiträge die gegen geltendes Recht verstoßen oder grob unsachlich oder moralisch bedenklich sind, nach eigenem Ermessen zu löschen.

© 2000 - 2023 artmagazine Kunst-Informationsgesellschaft m.b.H.

Bezahlte Anzeige
Bezahlte Anzeige
Bezahlte Anzeige
Gefördert durch: