Dave Robertson Photography - Professional photographer in Cape Town, South Africa

+ Biography of Dave Robertson

Dave Robertson is a self-taught visual artist, born in Zimbabwe,
based in Cape Town . His photographic work is primarily a form
of social commentary.

A career highlight for Dave was winning a national award at the
Spier Contemporary 2010 for 'Paper Trails', a documentary photographic
project focusing on informal recyclers in Newtown, Johannesburg.

Dave's first photographic book, “Plakkerskamp, Bonnievale 2003 -2012”,
was recently published by a humanitarian organisation in Luxembourg, Europe.
The book won a national publication award, the "Letzebuerger Buchprais 2013".
The project spans nine years and documents a group of marginalised
people living in an informal settlement near Bonnievale, a few hours drive
from Cape Town. The images focus on the gradual improvement of living
conditions over the nine years, as well as the introduction of a NGO funded
day-care center for pre-school children from the informal settlement.


Previous to this, he was best known for a series of expressionist,
hand-painted photographs of marginalised lifestyles in Southern Africa.
These were exhibited as a series of photo lithographic prints at galleries
in Germany, the Netherlands and at “Photo LA 2004” in the USA.

More recently his work has been exhibited by several galleries in
Cape Town including the Kalk Bay Modern, the Irma Stern Museum,
the Bell-Roberts Gallery, Focus Contemporary gallery as well as
the Kim Sacks Gallery in Johannesburg.

Dave's first exhibition of large-scale abstract paintings was
hosted by Worldart Gallery, Cape Town, in 2011.Entitled 'concrete trails, urban tails',
the paintings sold out in three weeks. Since then he has exhibited paintings in many
group shows around South Africa.

In early 2014, at the Res Gallery in Johannesburg, he exhibited Partially Nomad, a body of work
which combined painting and photography. Work from this show was selected

to show in the celebrated  group exhibition entitled "Twenty: Art in the time of Democracy" .

Recent Exhibitions

2016 “Ephemeral Pleasures”, group show, Moor Gallery, Franschoek.
2016 “Muse Montage”, Eclectica Modern Gallery, Cape Town.
2016 “Materialisation”, group show, Art in the yard gallery, Franschoek.
2016 “A tribute to Rose Korber”, group show, AVA Gallery, Cape Town.

2015 Twenty: "Art in the time of Democracy", University of Johannesburg.

Twenty: "Art in the time of Democracy", Pretoria Art Museum.

2015 "Partially Nomad", THATARTFAIR, Woodstock , Cape Town.

2014 "Twenty years of Democracy", Appalacian State University, North Carolina.

2014 "Urban Wonderland", Kalk Bay Modern, Cape Town.

2014 "Great stock", group show, AVA Gallery, Cape Town.

2014 "Partially Nomad", Solo show, Res Gallery, Johannesburg.

2013 "Artreach", group show, AVA Gallery, Cape Town.

2013 "Plakkerskamp, 2003 - 2012", award winner, Luxembourg Book Awards 2013.

2012 "Plakkerskamp, 2003 - 2012", book launch Chateau de Wiltz, Luxembourg.

2011 "concrete trails urban tales", Worldart Gallery, Cape Town.

2010 "Point of Focus", pinhole photography, Kalk Bay Modern Gallery, Cape Town.

2010 "Bonani Africa", documentary photographic show, The Castle, Cape Town.

2010 "Spier Contemporary 2010", award winner for 'Paper Trails' series.

+ General Info

Information on printing

Images are printed on cotton rag paper using archival pigment ink.
They are printed with a 4cm white border surrounding the image.
All artworks are signed and numbered by the artist.

Rain Exhibition 

An interpretation of life on the streets of Cape Town in the winter of 2008,
captured from the interior of my car during persistent rainy outbursts.
Throughout the process of capturing these images there was a strong sense
of the rain-splattered windows of my vehicle acting as a barrier separating me,
the protected insider from the outsiders whose lives were in disruption.
This experience increased my awareness of the divide between the life of an
insider and an outsider.
Photographed entirely through the windows of my car, the images are not
digitally manipulated apart from the obvious adjustments of colour and contrast.

Prints are available in three sizes.
  59cm x 42cm   edition of 9
  84cm x 59cm   edition of 9
120cm x 84cm   edition of 3

African hand-painted photographs

These images depicting aspects of marginalised lifestyles in Southern Africa,
originated as black and white photographs to which I added colour .
An approach that had its roots in the pre-democratic period of South African
history and reflects my belief that the addition of vibrant colour offered an
antidote to what was often a dark and volatile period
Prints are available in two sizes from an edition of 33.
 A2 size 42cm x 59cm
 A1 size 59cm x 84cm

Informal Recyclers
A body of work entitled : 'Paper Trails'

Every day, a number of men and woman sort through unwanted material
that accumulates at urban outlets. Informal recyclers, the so-called
"trolley people'' load up their makeshift carts with wastepaper and cardboard
and push their cargo to recycling depots, where their colllections are sorted
and weighed and they are paid a small fee for their labour.From there,
the material undergoes recycling processes and is transformed so that it can
re-enter the formal economy, until it ends up once again on the refuse heaps
of South Africa's cities, and the process begins anew.

Although their main ambition is to survive, the ''trolley people'' have for many
years been inadvertently helping to raise awareness about recycling possibilities.
As such they are accidental pioneers in the recycling trend in our country.
Yet the more proactive the public becomes about sustainable living, the less
opportunity there will be for these informal recyclers to continue exchanging
waste for cash to ensure their daily survival.
These images, photographed over a few years, offer a glimpse into the fragile
existence of recyclers operating in Newtown, Johannesburg.

Prints are available in two sizes.
The smaller size is printed on fibre based photographic paper.
The larger size is printed on Fuji crystal archive photographic paper.
Due to the length of the prints they are normally archivally bonded to aluminium.

122cm x 51cm  edition of 9
200cm x 80cm  editon  of 3

Abstract Egypt

These images where photographed over a period of two weeks in
three of the largest cities in Egypt, using a Widelux panoramic

camera, which was manufactured in the 1960's. The camera is
equiped with only three shutter speeds and has a completely unique
way of capturing images on film.
'Abstract Egypt' was exhibited at the
Focus Contemporary gallery in
Cape Town in 2007.

Prints available in two sizes from an edition of 9.
200cm x 80cm

122cm x 51cm

Timbuktu, Mali

Images from a short, low budget trip to Mali in January 2008.
The highlight of my trip was
the fantastic three-day music
experience at the 'Festival au Desert' north of Timbuktu.

Prints are available in two sizes from an edition of 9.
59cm  x   84cm
84cm  x  120cm

African Panoramic

These images were photographed for a book on marginalised areas
and communities in South Africa, entitled 'Colour projects'.

Prints are available in two sizes from an edition of 3.
113cm x 53cm
  51cm x 24cm

+ Copyright Information

Terms & Conditions / Copyright

All images in this web site are copyrighted. It is a violation of copyright to copy, download, store, reproduce or distribute any image on this site without a license agreement or written authorization from the holder of that copyright.

Definitions :
For the purpose of this agreement ‘the Client’ and ‘the Advertiser’ shall, where the context so admits, include their respective assignees, sub-licencees and successors in title. All references to both ‘the Client’ and ‘the Advertiser’ shall be interpreted as references to Dave Robertson’s client. Photographs or images means all photographic material furnished by Dave Robertson.

Copyright :
The entire copyright of the photographs is retained by
the Photographer at all times throughout the world.

Permission to use :
Downloads are for the purpose of layout and presentation only, no reproductive rights are granted or implied. The licence to use comes
into effect from the date of payment of the relevant invoice(s).
No use may be made of the images before full payment of the relevant invoice(s) without the express permission of Dave Robertson.
Any permission which may be given will automatically be revoked if
full payment is not made by the due date or if the ‘Client’ is put into receivership or liquidation.

The licence only applies to ‘the Advertiser’ and product as stated on the agreement and it’s benefit shall not be assigned to any third party without Dave Robertson’s permission.
Permission to use the photographs for purposes outside the licence will normally be granted upon payment of a further fee which must be mutually agreed before such further use.
The duration of the Right to Use shall be determined from the date of the licence unless otherwise agreed with Dave Robertson.

Exclusivity :
Exclusivity whether by territory or product group must be requested. The client would then be authorized to publish the photographs, in the territories agreed, to the exclusion of all other persons including the Photographer. However the Photographer retains the right in all cases to use the photographs in any manner at any time and in any part of the world for the purpose of advertising or promoting his work. After the exclusivity period indicated on the Licence to Use the Photographer shall be entitled to use the photographs for any purpose.

Client confidentiality :
Dave Robertson will keep confidential and not disclose to any third parties or make any use of information communicated to them in confidence for the purpose of an agreement.

Ownership of materials :
All materials supplied by Dave Robertson remain the property of Dave Robertson and must be returned to Dave Robertson within 30 days of the expiration of the licence.

Indemnity :
The Photographer agrees to indemnify the Client against all expenses, damages, claims and legal costs arising out
 of any failure by the photographer to obtain any clearances for which he is responsible in respect of third party copyright works, trade marks, designs and intellectual property.
The Client undertakes not to attach to the photographs any words or meaning which could be deemed to be derogatory or libelous to the photographer or any person, place or location contained within the image and to indemnify the Photographer against all expenses, damages, claims and legal costs arising out of claims made for this reason.

Electronic storage :
Save for the purpose of production for the licensed use(s) the photographs may not be stored in any form of electronic medium without the written permission of the Photographer. Manipulation of the image or use of only a portion of the image may
only take place with the permission of the Photographer.