"I want to transform the physical world into the psychological world," is how Roger Ballen describes his work. He is among the small number of photographers exclusively committed to analogue black-and-white photography. After four decades of pursing photography as an advanced hobby, Ballen – who studied Psychology and later Geology – now views himself as a photographer and artist.
For more than forty years, Ballen has led his audiences into a bizarre, often unsettling underworld of people living on the margins of society – a shadowy realm, set predominantly in South Africa. The Asylum of the Birds, which gave Ballen's latest series its name, is a building in Johannesburg where people and animals share a disturbing coexistence in a house that is both a refuge and a ghetto.
The series, which was finalised in spring 2014, will be displayed for the first time as part of the exhibition at the Villa Stuck Museum. Theatre of the Absurd is the museum's fourth exhibition in the Year of Photography.
An extensive portfolio on the project Asylum of the Birds is featured in LFI 3/2014.
For further information visit Asylum of the Birds and Villa Stuck