See an iteration of our exhibition Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness in a new three-artist group show, alongside works by Claude Cahun and Samuel Fosso.
Claude, Samuel, Zanele explores self-portraiture and how each photographer addresses issues of politics, race, gender and identity in their work.
Thirty-five works by Muholi are in the exhibition, including four works commissioned by Autograph in 2017 and from our permanent collection.
Visual activist Muholi uses their body as a canvas to confront the politics of race and representation in the visual archive. Read More
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Zanele Muholi (South Africa, b. 1972) is a visual activist and photographer based in Johannesburg. Muholi’s self-proclaimed mission is “to re-write a Black queer and trans visual history of South Africa for the world to know of our resistance and existence at the height of hate crimes in South Africa and beyond.”
Muholi co-founded the Forum for Empowerment of Women (FEW) in 2002 and Inkanyiso (www.inkanyiso.org), a forum for queer and visual (activist) media, in 2009.
Muholi studied Advanced Photography at the Market Photo Workshop in Newtown, Johannesburg, and in 2009 completed an MFA: Documentary Media at Ryerson University in Toronto. In 2013, they became an honorary professor at the University of the Arts/Hochschule für Künste Bremen. Most recently, Muholi was bestowed France’s highest cultural honor, the Chevalier de l'Ordre des Arts des Lettres. They were included in the South African pavilion at the 55th Venice Biennale (2013) and took part in the São Paolo Biennial (2010) and documenta 13, Kassel (2013).
A selection of works in Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama, Hail the Dark Lioness have been loaned from the Luma Foundation.
Banner image: ZaKi, Kyoto, Japan, 2017. © Zanele Muholi, courtesy Autograph.
Page images, from top left: 1) Ntozakhe II [detail], Parktown, 2016 © Zanele Muholi Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/ Johannesburg and Yancey Richardson, New York. 2) Bester I [detail], Mayotte, 2015 © Zanele Muholi Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/ Johannesburg and Yancey Richardson, New York. 3) Somnyama Ngonyama II [detail], Oslo, 2015 © Zanele Muholi Courtesy of Stevenson, Cape Town/ Johannesburg and Yancey Richardson, New York.
Autograph is a place to see things differently. Since 1988, we have championed photography that explores issues of race, identity, representation, human rights and social justice, sharing how photographs reflect lived experiences and shape our understanding of ourselves and others.Donate Join our mailing list