CHINA: Amandla! South African Women Photographers


CURATED by Dudu Madonsela and Neo Ntsoma (Johannesburg) and produced by Alasdair Foster (Sydney), ‘Amandla! South African Women Photographers’ brought together a diverse array of work by twenty contemporary South African women photographers. These images were set in a wider context with the inclusion of important historical images from the collections of Museum Africa and the Bensusan Museum and Library of Photography in Johannesburg.

2016 marked the sixtieth anniversary of an historic protest by 20,000 South African women of all races who marched to the Union Buildings in Pretoria to protest the so-called Pass Laws, which effectively banned non-white women from living in urban areas unless they were in domestic service.



Taking this anniversary as its inspiration, the exhibition integrated a number of important developmental themes that have shaped the lives of South African women in the journey from slavery, colonialism and apartheid through the period of transition to post-apartheid democracy. As these themes entwined, they wove a vivid story of how the struggle of South African women for emancipation evolved from the isolation of the individual to the solidarity of collective action.


Upper: Neo Ntsoma ‘Delivery Boys and African Servants…’
Middle: Louise Gubb ‘African National Congress leader Nelson Mandela is welcomed back to his Soweto home by neighbourhood children’ February 1990
Lower: an image from the Museum Africa Archives, c1880


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  • The majority of the texts on this site are by Alasdair Foster and represent his opinions. However, in order to facilitate a useful diversity of views, some texts have been invited from artists and colleagues around the world, while others appear as independent comments. These opinions and comments are not necessarily those of Alasdair Foster or Cultural Development Consulting (CDC). All data and information on this site is provided on an as-is basis. While every effort is made to be as thorough as possible, neither Alasdair Foster nor CDC make representations as to accuracy, completeness, currency, suitability or validity of any information on this site and will not be liable for any errors, omissions or delays in this information or any losses, injuries or damages arising from its display or use.
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