Schlagwort-Archive: collection

Johannesburg-Bloggerin Laurice Taitz im Interview

Eine Frau über ihr Engagement für ein „schönes Johannesburg“

(Autor/ Editor: Ghassan Abid)

Deutsche Interview-Zusammenfassung:

Johannesburg ist eine Stadt, die mit vielen negativen Begleiterscheinungen einer Metropole in Verbindung gebracht wird – Kriminalität, Rassismus, Verkehrschaos, Armutsviertel und Arbeitslosigkeit. Laurice Taitz hingegen bloggt nur Positives aus und zu Jo´burg. Sie liebt ihren Wohnort, den man aus verschiedenen Perspektiven her betrachten müsse. Arme und Reiche leben hier beinahe nebeneinander. Viele Gesellschaften sind in einer Gesellschaft integriert. Die einstige Goldgräberstadt hat sich zu einer riesigen Heimat von Millionen von Menschen unterschiedlichster Herkunft, Religion, Sozialschicht und Nationalität entwickelt. Die Innenstadt mit dem Constitution Hill, dem Verfassungsgerichtshof Südafrikas, bewertet die Bloggerin als schönsten Ort Johannesburgs. Ebenso faszinieren sie die seit hundert Jahren bestehende Public Library, die öffentlichen Kunstinstallationen, das künstlerisch-hippe Viertel Maboneng, die Shopping-Straßen unweit der Diagonal Street und das äthiopische Viertel im Osten der Stadt. „Die Stadt ist voller Gegensätze und Plätze, die es zu entdecken gilt“, sagt Laurice. Und dennoch bevorzugen Europäer eher Kapstadt aufzusuchen. Sie selber war bereits zweimal in Deutschland und auch in Berlin. Die deutsche Hauptstadt beneidet sie für ihre schöne Architektur. „Es ist ein Ort, welcher viele Lektionen für Südafrika bereithält“, hält sie abschließend fest.

© Johannesburg is offering a reams of public arts (Picture Source: www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

© Johannesburg is offering a reams of public arts (Picture Source: http://www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

© Laurice Taitz, Blogger from Johannesburg

© Laurice Taitz, Blogger from Johannesburg

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: We would like to welcome on „SÜDAFRIKA – Land der Kontraste“ – the German Gateway to South Africa – the in Johannesburg based blogger Laurice Taitz.

You started your blog „nothing to do in joburg besides…“, in which you present a cultural view on this megacity. What is Johannesburg standing for?

Answer: Johannesburg is a city on the move. It was founded on a gold rush and it remains true to that, a city that in parts flashes its wealth and that also hides a rich seam of gold. It can be a difficult place to get to know but for me it’s a vibrant urban African metropolis.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Which is from your point of view the most beautiful place in Johannesburg and for which reason?

Answer: The inner city is the most beautiful place because every time I am there I see that the huge efforts to revive it are showing results. Some of my favourite sites include: Constitution Hill, where the values of one of the most progressive constitutions in the world are brought to life each day; Johannesburg’s newly-renovated Public Library, a 100-year-old architectural masterpiece; the city’s growing collection of public art; the up-and-coming hip urban district of Maboneng; the maze of shopping streets of old Johannesburg around Diagonal street; the Ethiopian district on the east side of the city; and Braamfontein’s lively streetlife.

Diagonal Street on Google Street View

The city is full of contrasts, and places to explore. And while you didn’t ask, the second most beautiful place is Johannesburg’s suburbs in spring when the jacaranda trees are in bloom and this tree-lined city is full of purple blossoms.

© The Public Library in Johannesburg (Picture Source: www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

© The Public Library in Johannesburg (Picture Source: http://www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: You demonstrate on your blog mostly lovely sights of Johannesburg. Why aren´t you writing on difficult topics like crime, poverty, xenophobia or corruption?

Answer: While I focus on what I love about the city and what it has to offer I never shy away from dealing with its less comfortable aspects, as these are part of the city’s challenges. As a former political reporter I am also acutely aware of giving readers the full story. I just don’t dwell on it because I see enormously positive changes taking place.

© Johannesburg is the home of different cultures (Picture Source: www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

© Johannesburg is the home of different cultures (Picture Source: http://www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Today, South Africa has developed a huge blogging scene. How would you evaluate the importance of blogs for the public opinion making process in South Africa?

Answer: I think that particularly the Joburg blogs that have emerged are helping to shape a new perception of the city for locals and foreigners. So many voices, filled with pride, in exploring a city, discovering its secrets and creating a sense of belonging from diverse perspectives.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Johannesburg is a big cosmopolitan city with many cultures and nationalities. Do you think that in Joburg is one society or rather several societies living side by side?

Answer: It depends where you stand. You can choose a pocket of the city and never see what’s beyond that corner but I think Joburg is many societies in one. A place where rich and poor live side by side, not always easily, and where people from all over Africa and the world congregate. The mix is what makes this city exciting.

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2010sdafrika-editorial staff: The most Germans and Europeans are preferring to live in Cape Town as in Johannesburg. How far could you understand this decision and which pros is Joburg providing?

Answer: I think people from Europe are easily seduced by Cape Town’s incredible beauty and promise of a cosmopolitan lifestyle. Who isn’t? But saying that, Joburg has a perceptible pulse all year round, and that makes it an exciting place to be with its mix of people, cultures, commerce and arts.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Which perception do you have from Germany and Germans?

Answer: I have visited Germany twice and each time been struck by a country that has rebuilt itself into a modern and dynamic society and that continues to deal with its past but is looking to its future. It is a place that has many lessons for South Africa. I also fell in love with Berlin’s incredible architecture and hope to visit again soon.

© A spirit mix of religion and arts in Jo´burg (Picture Source: www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

© A spirit mix of religion and arts in Jo´burg (Picture Source: http://www.todoinjoburg.co.za)

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Laurice Taitz, blogger from Jo´burg, thank you very much for this urban interview!

2010sdafrika-Interview mit dem Architekten Luyanda Mpahlwa zur Johannesburger Städtekultur:

https://2010sdafrika.wordpress.com/2010/05/16/johannesburg-im-architektur-boom/

Multimedia projects by Louis Vorster

Interview about multimedia design, South African photography and arts

(Editor/ Autor: Ghassan Abid)

Deutsche Interview-Zusammenfassung:

© Louis Vorster, Südafrikas bekanntester Werbefotograf

Vodacom, Nike oder The South African Airways – die südafrikanischen und ausländischen Konzerne haben bei der Beauftragung von Werbekampagnen einen Ansprechpartner: Louis Vorster. Vorster zählt zu den bekanntesten und erfolgreichsten Fotografen Südafrikas. Einst unterrichtete er Studenten im Studiengang  Multimedia Design, nun liebt er es, den Menschen in Bilder einzufangen. Seine Inspiration erhält er aus Deutschland, von den Fotografen Wolfgang Tillmans und Jürgen Telle. Vorster hält fest, dass sich in Südafrika keine homogene Fotografieszene entwickelt hat, sondern vielmehr verschiedene Stile entstanden sind. Umso trauriger ist es, dass die gegenwärtige Regierung des Landes keine Förderung der Fotografen für wichtig erachtet, obwohl diese – nachgewiesen in den USA – als eigene Wirtschaftsbranche zum BIP beisteuern kann. Die kontrovers diskutierte künstlerische Arbeit seiner schwarz-lesbischen Kollegin Zanele Muholi, die die Intimität von Frauen abbildet, verteidigt er.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: We welcome on „SÜDAFRIKA – Land der Kontraste“ – the German gateway to South Africa – the South African commercial portrait photographer Louis Vorster. You studied Industrial Design in Johannesburg and Cape Town. One day you switched to photography, for which reason and why photography?

Answer: In the late 90’s after I graduated in Industrial design I drifted into multimedia design and for 2 years taught multimedia design. At the university where I taught, our department shared a building with the photography department, I found myself spending more time at the photography department creating content for multimedia projects than designing the actual projects. After my two years teaching, I decided I wanted to be a professional photographer and assisted other photographers for a couple of years.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: You are known for your expressive portraits. What does it mean for you from artistic viewpoint to photograph people?

Answer: I find it easier to express myself as a photographer when I photograph people as opposed to when I shoot landscapes or still lives, not only because people can be directed but because people move me more than other subjects, I like people.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: South Africa is becoming more and more an global player in arts. However, the United States are the leading nation in photography. Is the South African government supporting their photographers by funding or connecting?

Answer: No, I think generally our goverment and individuals representing the goverment don’t understand the role or importance of photographers. Fine art, commercial  or press photographers. 

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: You still haven´t in Germany yet. What do you think about Germany as a country and about German arts. Which impressions do you have from this nation and Germans?

Answer: This is an interesting question because my documentary work is influenced by two German photographers more than anything else, Wolfgang Tillmans and Juergen Teller. Both of them are very well known, I have looked at their work since 2001. 

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Please note: All arts are property and under copyright licence of Louis Vorster.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: You worked already for several big enterprises, like Vodacom, Nike or The South African Airways. On the one hand, you are producing portraits. On the other hand, you are capturing pictures from landscapes, music events and polaroids. Your collection „Portraits #1“ is really interesting – what is your message to the public?

Answer: Smile!

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: In the past, we have interviewed Zanele Muholi, a lesbian black photographer from Durban. She told us, that photographer will be in social trouble, if they are focussing on intimacy. Does the South African society being ready for ´spunky´ arts?

Answer: South Africa is such a diverse society. Communities not only range from liberal to conservative but we also have different cultural backgrounds. Topics that may be everyday conversation in one community could be a big taboo in others. Unfortunately some people will always be blinded by the subject matter of a photograph to such an extent that they will never be able to appreciate any other value that the work may have. Artists like Zanele Muholi face challenges not always understood by us who express and present our work to more liberal (and tolerant) audiences.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Which upcoming projects are you preparing?

Answer: I started shooting a documentary on violence under farm workers in the Cape winelands about a year ago, I would like to push this project a bit harder and maybe realize it in the next few months.

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Which dreams would you like to realize?

Answer: I would like to shoot a big documentary, something I can sink my teeth into. Something important that will keep me occupied for 6 months to a year. Also. I would like to get paid for it. 

2010sdafrika-editorial staff: Louis Vorster, portrait photographer from Cape Town in South Africa, thank you very much for this interview!

2010sdafrika-article to photographer Roger Ballen:

https://2010sdafrika.wordpress.com/2011/03/20/photos-with-reflection-on-the-psyche-roger-ballen-in-interview/