Through The Lens Collective is delighted with the inclusion of our Advanced student, Remofiloe Mayisela and mentorship student Mikhail Samuel in the program and exhibition. Saad Eltinay our 2022 TTLC Mentee is also exhibiting work. 

A project by KLUB DER KÜNSTE of the Deichtorhallen Hamburg for the 8th Triennial of Photography 2022

Opening May 19th, 2022, 7 pm
Exhibition in the Gallerycorridor at Hall of contemporary Art:
May 20 – July 31, 2022

Information is the currency of the moment, and information is spread most rapidly through social media. Information is not only text, but mainly also images. We connected young photographers from Hamburg, Khartoum, Abidjan, Casablanca and Johannesburg. Two of them each, brought together at the kickoff meeting, exchanged information about everyday or social, political or personal circumstances via WhatsApp and Instagram etc. Visually and textually, this exchanged »currency« is the theme of the project. What is the value of this information about life circumstances and contexts away from the public, official news and information flow? Using the example of the current difficult situation in Khartoum and the interrupted flow of information due to disrupted Internet and mobile phone service, direct information via social networks, which partially gets through, is of great »value« here.

The results were personal dialogues between the respective partners, who came to appreciate the exchange and value of this »information currency« more and more, thus providing a direct and almost intimate insight into their living conditions.

In weekly Zoom meetings with all participants and the local partners, the resulting communications (pictorial and textual) were presented, discussed and further developed. Information was exchanged over almost four months from January to mid-April 2022. From the resulting material André Lützen developed and conceptualized the exhibition together with the participants. The works will be shown on 5 monitors and in print form at the 8th Triennial of Photography in the Gallery in the Corridor of Cultural Education (Hall of Contemporary Art).

curated by:
André Lützen
photographies and texts by:

Yasmine Hatimi & Saad Eltinay (Marocco & Sudan)
Gabriela Guimarães & Mikhail Samuel (Germany/Brazil & South Africa)
Remofiloe Mayisela & Ahmed Khalid (South Africa & Sudan)
Caio Jacques & Henri Toh (Germany/Brazil & Ivory Coast)
Aurelie Tiffy & Eythar M. Gubara (Ivory Coast & Sudan/Germany)

 Local Project Organization:

Khartoum, Sudan
Ala Kheir (Freelancer)
Lilli Kobler (Goethe-Institute)

Johannesburg, South Africa
Michelle Loukidis 

Marrakesh, Morocco
Janine Gaëlle Dieudji (Freelancer)

Abidjan, Ivory Coast
Macline Hien (Freelancer)




of blood sweat and data/

On People, Place and Photography

Studio Nxumalo in collaboration with Through The Lens Collective presents an exhibition of contemporary documentary photography by established and new voices, who engage the city, its people, and diverse social structure through the mode of Portraiture. 

As a cosmopolitan city built largely on labour migration, a wealth of unknown stories and realities continue to unfold within this diverse and complex city, inspiring new generations of photographers, driven by a deep sense of curiosity about their own surroundings - to portray the people who co-inhabit this unique space.  

This exhibition approaches portraiture as a complex act of representation, social interest and artistic vision - qualities which embody the unique and diverse character of Johannesburg and its people. Here, we broadly consider the social significance of documentary portrait photography – and its power to shift perceptions through the simple, and yet layered act of seeing and portraying each other. 

The enduring socio-political impact of ‘witnessing’ is evidenced by the immense historical value of documentary photography in South Africa. The views of the photographers presented here serve as vital contributions to an ongoing visual engagement with the city, placing these intimate considerations of each other within a larger web of social activism.

Sibusiso Gcaba

Matt Kay

Nonzuzo Gxekwa

Kgomotso Neto

Tshepiso Mazibuko


Lindokuhle Sobekwa

Tshepo Moloi

Simphiwe Majozi

Lebogang Tlhako

Jack Markovitz


Collaboration with City of Ekurhuleni and Springs Art Gallery.

Special thanks to Thabo Sekoaila

Simphiwe Majozi uses the photographic medium to bring vision to his unseen experience of home. His work considers the immense spiritual value of those precious items left behind by those who have passed on, while acknowledging the significance of those who remain and become both remnants of and successors to; the lives and dreams of their ancestors. 

Many photographers, past and present, have documented South African cultural and spiritual traditions and practices, in attempt to evoke the spirited connection between earthly and metaphysical bodies. Majozi’s work brings a personal and contemporary vision to cultural tradition, reflecting on the experiences of those who are left behind - as inheritors of familial bonds and ancestral legacies. His body of work explores the role that both photography, and these inherited belongings play in our attempts to cherish and hold on to memory.  

The Image is Our Voice


Amira Shariff

Anna Sango

Dewald Bruwer

Hazel Mphande

Katlisho Kat Tleane


Rochelle Nembhard

Simphiwe Majozi

Tshepo Moloi

Through the Lens Collective (TTLC) is a strong educational programme and support system for emerging photographers in the early stages of their careers. Bringing together TTLC’s talented photographers and Berman Contemporary’s resources and curatorial expertise, the selected artists are given the platform to showcase their work and gain access to a wider audience.

The exhibition showcases a group of artists, all with their own visual narratives that reflect a specific place, community or idea within SouthAfrica. It’s clear that this group bears a strong identity that is deeply rooted in their environment, which they transform and renew. Ranging in style and technique the artists use photography as their artistic medium with a depth and sensitivity towards their chosen visual domain giving them each a unique voice which makes them stand out amongst the immensely saturated field.

THE IMAGE IS OUR VOICE reflects Berman Contemporary’s mission to create a synergistic network between South African artists and their global contemporaries while expanding with a more socially aware and inquisitive audience.


Portrait Show 2021

All photographs are memento mori. To take a photograph is to participate in another person (or thing’s) mortality, vulnerability, mutability. Precisely by slicing out this moment and freezing it, all photographs testify to time’s relentless melt.” Susan Sontag

Over the last couple of years we’ve participated in a collective reflection on life, death, and everything in between. Experiencing the loss of so many lives across the world, some as close as our own homes and communities; together we’ve entered into forced consideration of what it means to be alive at present, the fragility of human life, and the fleeting nature of our physical existence. 

The time spent reflecting on our relationships to other human beings, whether physical, socio-psychological, economic or otherwise, has heightened our awareness of our common humanity and mortality, as that which connects us all - regardless of the diversity of beliefs, experiences, social systems and geographies which seemingly separate us. Beyond the confines of culture and geographical borders, exists a common need to visualise the relationship between ourselves and others, for it is always our deep connections to other beings which drive and shape our earthly experience. 

And now, as we stare at the flattened surfaces of our human existence, we are reminded of both the triumphs and failures of photography, in its ability to both reveal and miss the very thing we are trying to explain. 

it by Chris Stamatiou/solo show


Is an animal an object or an individual? Every year hundreds of billions of animals are killed and used for food, fashion, entertainment and research. Whether we hunt, eat, use or own them – is our choice, not theirs. We consider them our property. The majority of humans on this planet don’t particularly care that animals are just as aware as we are. To humans, animals are seen as the ultimate ‘other’. We’ve placed them within a bizarre hierarchy that values one animal’s life over another. And yet like humans, all animals are conscious, rational and intelligent beings who love, nurture, experience fear  and have empathy. But are deemed unworthy of moral care and consideration.


Chris Stamatiou is a photography nerd based in Pretoria, South Africa. He is an alumni and past lecturer at Market Photo Workshop.

Over the years he has participated in workshops hosted by local and international photographers, namely Roger Ballen and Mary Ellen Mark (two of his biggest photographic influences) and received an Honourable Mention at the 2020 International Photography Awards.

His personal work explores concepts of marginalization, time and change.