Tuesday, October 20, 2009

People of Durban- Daniel Cuthbert

Daniel Cuthbert almost drove me past insane in the comments section concerning Sebastien Boncy's response to Pieter Hugo's photographs at Amy Stein's blog. So it was with a reluctant half heartedness that I looked at his People of Durban essay- and was instantly taken aback. This essay contains anything but the stereotypical, exotic images of deepest, "darkest" Africa. Nothing here will haunt you in your dreams, or entice you to book a flight over ASAP. They are the African EveryMan; walk out in any neighborhood anywhere and you're quite likely to see the same. Perhaps this is what the face of truly "subversive" photography looks like in Africa.

Cuthbert makes this open, honest, no frills approach work- no mean feat without the circus sideshow... And that's why we should continue to discuss and better understand this delicate and multifaceted relationship between race and photography, eventhough sometimes its the words that can get in the way...

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