In the '80s, after Roger Ballen moved to South Africa, his black-and-white photographs of the remote countryside and the people who lived there could pass for straightforward documents. His early work there had the stark simplicity of Walker Evans and the brutal directness of Lewis Baltz, but gradually that hard surface cracked, and an unsettling touch of madness seeped through. Here were white South Africans, isolated, inbred, and poor, who looked like the most benighted and blissfully oblivious citizens of Appalachia. When a book... More >>>
By photo: Courtesy Gagosian Gallery, New York
"I want to be where Beckett is": Ballen's Untitled (Dirkie on bed) (2000).