This is a photogrpah of Emelia Paulo. She is Angolan.
The ‘colony’ of Angola was founded in 1575 with the arrival of Paulo Dias de Novais with a hundred families of colonists and four hundred soldiers.
It’s center of Launda was granted the status of city in 1605.
The colonial period lasted close on 500 years.
Portuguese remains the only official language of Angola. Unlike modern variations currently spoken in multiple countries including Brazil, Mozambique, Macau and even Portugal itself, linguistic historians credit the Portuguese spoken by Angolans as the purist and most true to the original form of the language currently spoken today.
From the ‘we never dreamt of seas…’ series (2015). Each model I photograph is an active contributer to the process. The series interrogates an expression of self against the metaphor of broken, lost and discarded things.
The still strength of will.
A quiet war won.
Tropika explores the idea of what may often, on the surface, appear idyllic elements in the image, but continues Rossouw’s key process of direct personal dialogue with his subjects, the sense of self in strange surroundings.
Apparently incidental motifs and objects transform with the play of multiple light sources and pigment to the point where their original forms become blurred from the recognizable. Aged, water-damaged concrete becomes bioluminescent waves in a state of stormy unrest, a drape of fabric evokes forgotten ritual.
The photograph does not exist in isolation, but forms fluid associations and connections, with each image an invitation to the viewer by both photographer and subject into a moment within their greater exchange. Tropika animates these feelings of dislocation between home and away, light and dark, chaos and calm.