David Goldblatt: Photographs: Hasselblad Award 2006
Hasselblad Foundation and Hatje Cantz
305 x 270 mm
When David Goldblatt received the world-renowned Hasselblad Award in 2006, he had been making photographs of the South African landscape and culture
for more than 50 years. Born in 1930 in a gold-mining town near Johannesburg, his parents were Jewish refugees from Lithuania, and they raised him with
an emphasis on tolerance and antiracism. In 1975, at the height of apartheid, Goldblatt explored white nationalist culture in Some Afrikaners Photographed, and in the 80s he observed workers on the Kwandebele-Pretoria bus, many of
whom traveled eight hours every day to work and back. His late-90s solo show
at New York’s Museum of Modern Art focused on architectural work, and showed off Goldblatt’s uncanny ability to discover a society through its buildings and landscapes. His photographs of architectural structures revealed the ways that ideology had defined his home country’s landscape.
About the Artist
David Goldblatt was South African photographer known for his uncompromising images of his country during apartheid and afterward. “I was very interested in the events that were taking place in the country as a citizen but, as a photographer, I’m not particularly interested, and I wasn’t then, in photographing the moment that something happens. I’m interested in the conditions that give rise to events,” he once explained. Born on November 29, 1930 in Randfontein, South Africa, he began photographing at an early age but his father’s illness required Goldblatt to run his family business while studying at Witwatersrand University in Johannesburg. After selling the company in 1963, Goldblatt focused entirely on a career in photography. His involvement with various artistic circles in Johannesburg granted him access to a broad range of ethnic and socioeconomic groups. Though he refused to belong to any political organization and argued that his photographs should not be used for propaganda purposes, his works were presented in an exhibition organized by an anti-apartheid photographer’s collective in 1990. In 1998, Goldblatt became the first South African artist to have a solo exhibition at The Museum of Modern Art in New York. The artist died on June 25, 2018 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Today, his photographs are held in the collections of the South African National Gallery in Cape Town, the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and the Fotomuseum Winterthur in Switzerland, among others.
About the Publishers
Hasselblad Foundation. The Erna and Victor Hasselblad Foundation, established in 1979, is a fully independent, not-for-profit foundation based at Götaplatsen in Gothenburg, Sweden. The main aim of the Foundation is to promote research and academic teaching in the natural sciences and photography.
Hatje Cantz Verlag is a German book publisher specialising in photography, art, architecture and design. Their photography books cover documentary and editorial photography, political and social issues, and landscape; while their art books cover fine art and conceptual art. Hatje Cantz have been publishing since 1945.