Roger Ballen, Take-off, from the series Asylum, 2012
22.02.2013 - 28.04.2013
In his pictorial world between documentary and fiction, equally disturbing and striking, Roger Ballen is one of the most idiosyncratic and distinctive photographers of his generation. Born in New York in 1950, he has been living and working in South Africa for many years. The exhibition, for the first time on display in Austria, will offer a comprehensive insight into all creative periods of the artist.
Already during the sixties, Roger Ballen was familiar with well-known photographers such as André Kertész, Bruce Davidson or Henri-Cartier-Bresson, his mother being an employee at Magnum's New York office. Over time photography became his passion, in spite of this he decided to take a degree in psychology at the University of California, Berkeley.
Ballen's fascination for the grotesque and the abysmal is reflected already in his early photographs. Taken between 1969 and 1973, they anticipate characteristics of later series, such as the fragmentation of subjects or isolation in front of white walls.