Roger Ballen is best known for his psychologically powerful and intricately layered images that exist in a space between painting, drawing, installation, and photography. Ballenesque is the first comprehensive retrospective of his work.
Separated into four parts, Ballenesque takes readers on a chronological journey through Ballen’s entire oeuvre, including both iconic images and previously unpublished works. Part I explores Ballen’s formative artistic influences and his later rediscovery of boyhood through photography, culminating in his first published monograph, Boyhood, in 1979. Part II charts the period between 1980 and 2000, during which time he released his seminal monograph Outland. Part III covers the years 2000–2013, when Ballen achieved global recognition and his work began to veer away from portraiture altogether. Finally, in Part IV, Ballen reflects on his career.
With more than 300 photographs and an introduction by Robert JC Young, this book provides both a new way of seeing Ballen’s work for those who already follow his career and a comprehensive introduction for those encountering his striking photographs for the first time.
Roger Ballen is an award-winning American photographer who has lived and worked in South Africa since the 1970s. His previous books include The Theatre of Apparitions, Asylum of the Birds, Outland, Shadow Chamber, and Boarding House.
Robert JC Young
Robert J.C. Young, FBA, is Julius Silver Professor of English and Comparative Literature at New York University. He has been writing about Roger Ballen’s work since 2012. His most recent books are Empire Colony Postcolony, and, with Jean Khalfa, Frantz Fanon. Écrits sur l’aliénation et la liberté, Œuvres II.