/05 Animals

Roger Ballen

Boarding House

The focus of these photos is on a strange and alluring place near Johannesburg that Ballen calls the Boarding House. It is crowded with poor workers, transients, criminals hiding from the law, witchdoctors, children, pet animals and insects. There are stains, marks and mysterious drawings everywhere.

These photographs are like images from a waking dream – compelling, thought provoking and filled with layers of rich detail. The images in Boarding House blur the lines between documentary photography and art forms such as painting, theatre and sculpture – they make us question everything we see.

The images from the series Boarding House are published by Phaidon Press titled Boarding House.