NEWS
25/06/2018 12:39 SAST | Updated 25/06/2018 12:50 SAST

Tributes Pour In After David Goldblatt Dies At Age 87

Renowned South African photographer David Goldblatt passed away on Monday morning.

David Goldblatt poses on January 11 2011 at the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation in Paris, on the eve of the start of his exhibition 'TJ 1948-2010'.
AFP/Getty Images
David Goldblatt poses on January 11 2011 at the Henri Cartier-Bresson Foundation in Paris, on the eve of the start of his exhibition 'TJ 1948-2010'.

Renowned South African photographer David Goldblatt has died. According to the Mail & Guardian, this was confirmed by the Goodman Gallery on Monday morning.

According to his biography on SAhistory.org.za, Goldblatt was born in Randfontein in 1930 — the son of Lithuanian immigrants who fled the Baltic nation to escape persecution as Jews.

After matriculating in 1948, Goldblatt decided to pursue a career in photojournalism.

He became famous as one of the country's best documentary photographers, active in the white liberal artistic community in Johannesburg, photographing farming and mining communities.

But he actively stayed away from politics and did not want his work to be used by any political organisation.

However, his work would later become politicised, with the London office of the ANC calling for a boycott his Goldblatt's touring exhibition in the 1980s. The ANC felt Goldblatt had defied the cultural boycott and took issue with the fact that Goldblatt was the resident photographer for mining company Anglo-American.

He was one of the first South Africans to be represented in the New York Museum of Modern Art.

While his work was not overtly political and he did not photograph many of the defining South African political moments, the Wits University Alumni page notes,

"For almost 35 years he has produced images of startling clarity and vision, ranging from nuanced and evocative portraits to striking explorations of the structure of urban and rural inequality in South Africa. In the 1970s and 1980s, some of his most haunting photographs came to provide complex evidence, for a world outside, of the texture and meaning of human displacement in this country.

Fans took to social media to remember Goldblatt.