Roger Ballen’s Theater of the Absurd

Angela Markovic
Posted May 13, 2014 in Arts


Roger Ballen’s exhibition Theater of the Absurd has been inhabiting Fotografiska for the spring season. Ballen is an American photographer who has been living in South Africa for over 30 years. His black and white images (he only shoots in black and white) are known to be powerful, thought provoking and at some points disturbing. His body of work evokes a whirlwind of emotions as he repeatedly pushes the boundaries of reality.

Throughout the past 40 years he has portrayed this world in which human beings and animals cohesively live together. This body of work takes you through Ballen’s own visual universe where you discover how a place can be transformed through his eyes in all its’ aesthetics, which can be haunting but sometimes even comical.

The exhibition also includes a short film that Ballen has worked on for the past six years. A film that follows him through the Asylum of the Birds, showing his interactions and photography process shooting its inhabitants, which include both animals and humans. Fotografiska has also added it’s own touches to the exhibition collecting different objects that mimic those in his pictures and even recreating a room from the asylum.

Roger Ballen’s Theater of the Absurd is at Fotografiska until June 1.


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