ROGER BALLEN AT THE MUSEUM OF CONTEMPORARY ART OF USP
It is crucial to my aesthetic that my images exist in ambiguous reality; a place defined neither by documentation nor by fantasy. - Roger Ballen
This is the first solo exhibition of Roger Ballen in Latin America. After being presented in Rio de Janeiro and Curitiba, "Roger Ballen: transfigurations, photographs 1968-2012" finally arrives in São Paulo. The retrospective aspect of the exhibition, that covers the vast production of the artist, aims to reverse the little dissemination of his work among us. Ballen was born in New York in 1950, but shortly after completing thirty years old chose to live in South Africa. Graduated as a Geologist, he started to devote himself to photography impacted by the local culture.
Ballen's camera works as a notebook for quick notes and also as the instrument for long and elaborated constructions. His photographic series investigate deeply the human condition without aesthetic or sentimental concessions. The black and white of his images possess a peculiar harshness very different from the tonal subtleties of classical photography. The body, the nature, the culture, the barbarism, the madness and the animality are just some of the themes through which Ballen takes us on a timeless and paradoxically contemporary journey. Upon hosting this exhibition, MAC USP continues its external partnerships program and fulfills its role of bringing the public different aspects of the current artistic production.
Professor and curator at MAC USP
© 2015 Museu de Arte Contemporânea da Universidade de São Paulo