edited by Audrey Salmon & Lukas Birk
20x15cm / 195 Pages
English & Zulu
Edition of 200 numbered
Not Collected is an insight into local communities around Johannesburg, South Africa, just before Apartheid ended. This rare archive was found in Jeppestown district by Audrey Salmon and Lukas Birk on the back shelves of Ravi Lalla’s framing and poster shop. This once large establishment was a cornerstone in the area, and Ravi’s stories span four decades. Ravi used to develop, enlarge and frame images taken by workers whose jobs were in Jeppestown. They commuted on a daily basis from their townships. Following the end of Apartheid, people’s movements shifted and some never went back to where they used to work. Many of Ravi’s clients did Not Collecttheir images. For 30 years, Ravi kept these pictures in a box “just in case”… A box holding this wonderful collection of prismatic images. A box filled with pride and joy regardless the political context.
“AT THAT TIME EVEN IN OUR OWN COMMUNITY, LET’S SAY IF YOU HAD A DIFFERENT DIALECT, I COULDN’T GET MARRIED TO YOU. OUR OWN PARENTS HAD [INTERNALIZED] APARTHEID LIKE THAT. THIS IS HOW THEY BRAINWASHED EVERYBODY! APARTHEID REALLY SCREWED UP EVERYTHING! IT WAS THE ONLY COUNTRY IN THE WORLD WHERE THIS WAS PRACTISED LEGALLY. IT WAS THE HEIGHT OF RACISM! THIS IS WHY YOU FIND ALL THESE THINGS HERE. WHEN PEOPLE GO OFF THE ROCKET BECAUSE THERE IS SO MUCH HATRED BUILT UP OVER THE YEARS. AND NOW, YOU HAVE GIVEN ME FREEDOM – THAT IS NOT ENOUGH. FREEDOM IS FINE BUT YOU NEED TO KNOW HOW TO UTILIZE FREEDOM. UNFORTUNATELY, WE DON’T KNOW HOW TO UTILISE FREEDOM. I HAVE SEEN IT ALL. FROM THE ‘60S ON. THAT IS HOW I GREW UP. ” Ravi Lalla