Published by Steidl. Edited by Ivan Vladislavic. Text by Lindsay Bremner, Denis Hirson, Harry Kalmer, Kgebetli Moele, Sean O´Toole, Melinda Silverman, Ivan Vladislavic, Percy Zvomuya.
Mikhael Subotzky and Patrick Waterhouse worked at Ponte City, the iconic Johannesburg apartment building which is Africa's tallest residential skyscraper, for more than six years. They photographed the residents and documented the building-every door, the view from every window, the image on every television screen. This remarkable body of images is presented here in counterpoint with an extensive archive of found material and historical documents. The visual story is integrated with a sustained sequence of essays and documentary texts. In the essays, some of South Africa's leading scholars and writers explore Ponte City's unique place in Johannesburg and in the imagination of its citizens. What emerges is a complex portrait of a place shaped by contending projections, a single, unavoidable building seen as refuge and monstrosity, dreamland and dystopia, a lightning rod for a society's hopes and fears, and always a beacon to navigate by. This long-term project obtained the Discovery Award at Les Rencontres d'Arles in 2011.
Published by Steidl. Edited by Ivan Vladislavic. Contributions by Anthea Buys, Sean O'Toole.
Retinal Shift is the catalogue for Mikhael Subotzky's 2012 Standard Bank Young Artist Exhibition. It investigates the practice and mechanics of looking, in relation to the history of Grahamstown, the history of photographic devices and Subotzky's own history as an artist. The works draw on archival portraits from the last century, found surveillance footage, as well as Subotzky's own photographs from various series that he recontextualizes. The opening work in the book is a self-portrait that Subotzky made with the assistance of an optometrist. High-resolution images of his left and right retinas sit side by side. Says Subotzky: "I was fascinated by this encounter. At the moment that my retinas, parts of my essential organs of seeing, were photographed, I was blinded by the apparatus that made the images."
Published by Chris Boot. Text by Jonny Steinberg, Mikhael Subotzky.
Magnum photographer Mikhael Subotzky's first book, about society, crime and punishment in South Africa, focuses on the small Karoo town of Beaufort West and considers the town, its prison, its vivid characters and poignant social landscapes. With an introduction by leading South African writer Jonny Steinberg and Subotzky's own commentary, the book is both a document of social evidence and the visual manifesto of the best of the new wave of South African art photographers.