CAP Prize 2019 | Winners
AND THE WINNERS OF THE CAP PRIZE 2019 ARE…
Jodi Bieber deals with the subject of apartheid by dealing with the official absence of apartheid. As such, her photographic project begins on 27 April, 1994, the day the ANC won the first free and general elections in South Africa, which she reported on as a journalist for a major daily newspaper.
Since then, her focus has always been on the next generation. All of the 45 protagonists featured in her portrait series #i are born after 1994: young people and young adults from various social classes in Johannesburg who talk about their dreams, plans, hopes and ideas. Designer Brenton Maart transforms the protagonists' statements, their own photos from their smartphones, as well as a central portrait in which the subjects place themselves in front of Bieber’s camera into tableau collages, which the photographer presented both during the 2019 elections and on the occasion of the 25th anniversary of the end of political apartheid.
The interactive component involved in the work’s creation corresponds to the collaborative approach to the acquisition of the models, and the presentation of the pictures as slide shows or posters in schools or sometimes in a women's prison.
SANNE DE WILDE & BÉNÉDICTE KURZEN
Born in 1987 in Antwerpen, Belgium. Lives in Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Born in 1980 in Lyon, France. Lives in lagos, Nigeria
Land of Ibeji, 2018
Twins are in league with demons, herald disaster, and must be ostracized or even killed. This was once a widespread belief, and not just in Africa. Twins mean twice as much luck, twice as much fertility and twice as much love. Or so goes the fundamentally changed interpretation that is now widespread among the Yoruba in south-western Nigeria. So many twins are born here – more than anywhere else – that the small town of Igbo-Ora, located north of Lagos, has adopted the title of “Twin Capital of the World”.
In their “twins research”, the two photographers, Sanne de Wilde and Bénédicte Kurzen, relied on staging techniques that are very different but at the same time showcase their characteristic sense of flair and spectacle, emphasizing traditional and symbolic colors. The pair also made use of blending and, of course, reflections.
Yet the sets of twins in Land of Ibeji always have something fragile about them, conveying a conspiratorial closeness that also manifests in the idea that twins share one soul. All the protagonists seem to be preoccupied by an atmosphere of contemplation regarding the interplay between attachment and individuality. By seeing themselves reflected in the other, they reflect about themselves.
Born in 1993 in Johannesburg, South Africa. Lives in Johannesburg, South Africa
The photographer from Johannesburg could be in the age group that Jodi Bieber had in mind for her #1 photo series, yet here, he is reporting on the essence of his own existence. The energy this unlocks makes way for innovations of an entirely different kind. The very title "Slaghuis", which conjures images of a slaughterhouse or, in a broader sense, a massacre, makes it clear that there is no room for hopes and dreams here. The artist's sense of shame and despair regarding the space in which he grew up has given rise to anger and rage. He lived in a box room in a dosshouse, where nothing human was hidden from him, and where the violence and schizophrenia of society crashed in daily like waves. He wanted nothing but to flee. But where could he flee to? He felt that even his thoughts were damaged, injured, raped.
Thembinkosi Hlatshwayo uses the medium of photographic collage to roughly and rawly encapsulate the shabby and the torn, the violence and the hopelessness, in minimalist compositions. The result is a series of visual spotlights on the autobiography of an individual on the verge of extinction.
Abdo Shanan's black and white and color photographs cannot be ordered into a logical chain of associations. Rather, they are erratic and thus unsettling. The subtext is provided by the photographer both in the title Dry and in his thoughts on the inherent solitariness of the individual. Perhaps the “I” is an island after all, and the others are the ocean. But if the “I” is an island, doesn't that mean the others are also islands?
The notion of Algeria as a multicultural country led the photographer to question the relationship between personal history and the present. And what medium is better suited to such a line of interrogation than photography?
Our unconditionally subjective view of the subjects, who either respond inquiringly to our gaze or avoid it, contrasts with found objects and fragments of landscapes that seem as if they were relics of a life, collected over decades in a shoebox. This shoebox has now been opened like a Pandora's box, in order to expose one thing in particular: the infinite emptiness between the images, which become islands in an ocean of forgetting.
Jansen van Staden
Born in 1986 in Potchefstroom, South Africa. Lives in Cape Town, South Africa
Aware that he belonged to the first South African generation not plagued by war, Jansen van Staden turned his attention to the fatal mix of tradition and trauma in his homeland.
When he was 25 years old, his father died, and he found a letter in his estate addressed to a therapist. In this letter, his father spoke of his desire to kill and of his experiences of war at the age of seventeen; experiences that followed him throughout his life, but that he at the same time had kept hidden from his family. Where had the lack of empathy stemmed from? Had his father been shaped this way? And what sorts of psychological deformities must his father's parents have possessed to raise their son to be a hot-blooded killer?
Jansen van Straten asked himself whether hatred and war had long ago been inscribed in the genes; whether they continue to make their effect felt, or lie dormant, only to one day reemerge. The series Microlight is a self-therapy of sorts for the artist, illuminating anecdotally social parameters such as the need for closeness and communication, and the constant and unconscious infiltration of the instruments of violence into everyday life.