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David Goldblatt and Ivan Vladislavic Win "Best Photography Book 2011" Kraszna-Krausz Award
Concession store (shop catering especially to black miners) interior, Crown Mines. May 1967. David Goldblatt.

LONDON.- David Goldblatt and Ivan Vladislavic took honours in the Kraszna-Krausz Book Awards winning the “Best Photography Book 2011” award for their collaboration, TJ & Double Negative, published by Contrasto.

This year’s winner was announced as part of the Sony World Photography Awards at the Odeon Leicester Square, London on Wednesday, 27 April.

Judges Mary McCartney (Chair), David Campany and Yuka Yamaji said: “Goldblatt and Vladislaviċ’s ambitious project explores the relationship between text and image. A highly effective pairing of fiction and photography, this innovative collaboration redefines the possibilities for writing on and about photography.”

TJ/Double Negative brings together in a sleeved collectors' edition produced in Italy two of the finest artists at work in South Africa today: the photographer David Goldblatt and the novelist Ivan Vladislavic to present a double portrait of Johannesburg in a subtle and unfailing game of resonance and connections. The result is an exceptional dialogue where images and words alternate.

Commencing in the 1950s, Goldblatt’s masterful lens documents and comments on life over six decades in this incomparable African city. Selected form a massive body of work, this distillation presents a unique pictorial history of the city of Johannesburg: the City of Gold, Chowburg, eGoli, Jozi, Goutini, Duiwel's Dorp. ‘Johannesburg is a fragmented city. It is not a place of smoothly integrated parts. And it has a name that does not roll easily off the tongue.', with these words David Goldblatt introduces us into the sophisticated world of TJ - former initials of the city's car plates.

A new novel by Ivan Vladislavić is the partner of the book of photographs. In Double Negative, a young man in Johannesburg receives from a senior photographer an induction into the intricate nature of photography and artistic representation. He says ‘ If I try to imagine the lives going on in all these houses, the domestic dramas, the family sagas, it seems impossibly complicated. How could you ever do justice to something so rich in detail? You couldn't do it in a novel, let alone a photograph.' The novel traces the young man as he heads into his career that takes him overseas and back, developing in the proces an ever widening perspective on not only the social and political change in the country but also on questions to do with observation and the observing subject. It brings into sharp focus the history of South Africa's recent past and the difficulty of imaging and re-imagining it.

David Goldblatt has been photographing and documenting South African society for over 50 years. Born in Randfontein in 1930 to parents who came to South Africa to escape the persecution of Lithuanian Jews in 1890, he was simultaneously part of privileged white society and a victim of religious persecution and alienation. Motivated by his contradictory position in South African society, Goldblatt began photographing this society, and in 1963 decided to devote all of his time to photography. He was awarded the prestigious Henri Cartier-Bresson Award (2009), for his project "TJ".

Ivan Vladislavic is the award-winning author of three short story collections MISSING PERSONS, winner of the Olive Schreiner Prize, PROPAGANDA BY MONUMENTS and The Exploded View, collected together as FLASHBACK HOTEL (SA: Umuzi 2010). He is also author of the novella THE FOLLY and a non-fiction book on Johannesburg, PORTRAIT WITH KEYS (UK: Portobello 2006; US: W.W. Norton; SA: Umuzi 2006; France: Editions Zoe), which was the winner of the 2007 SA Sunday Times Alan Paton Award for non-fiction, and the University of Johannesburg Prize 2007, and shortlisted for the Royal Society of Literature Ondaatje Prize 2007.He has edited volumes on architecture and art, and written on the artist Willem Boshoff.

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