I have become increasingly enamoured with urban photography – people set in an urban habitat. And where better to pursue this than Cape Town with its physical, human and cultural diversity? The photographer becomes a voyeur, soaking in the resonances and nuances of each neighbourhood and peeking, even if only briefly and superficially, into the lives and private moments of the locals.
Recently I spent a couple of hours wandering around the Bo Kaap. and, to my surprise, it was a constant source of surprise to me. The dominance of Islam was not unexpected of course, but it was clear that the Bo Kaap was not a sequestrated ghetto within the Cape Town metro but was part and parcel of an evolving, diverse urban population with its own subcultures existing in apparent harmony with one another.
I was able to strike up a number of conversations which were enough to reveal a rich node of human stories reflecting the demographic and cultural shifts within the country.
It will be worth repeated visits though I am aware of the attraction posed by my camera for some of the locals. I am reluctant to engage security so will need to slowly make more friends. This post is concerned with the Bo Kaap, but the larger Cape Town is a kaleidoscope of peoples and cultures in distinctive urban spaces.
Beyond the immediate urban scene lies the magnificent physical presence of the city which is an ever present backdrop to our lives. We must treasure what we have and continue to pay homage through the way we develop the urban and peri-urban environments of one of the most cosmopolitan and beautiful cities in the world.
These images are part of a larger portfolio which can be viewed on my Flickr page here. Don’t forget that right clicking on each image allows you to open it in a fresh page. Likewise with the Flickr pics.
Hope you enjoy this preliminary sortie into frequently seen but infrequently explored territory.