Following a series of portraits of his compatriots made in the early 1970s, photographer David Goldblatt, for a very short and intense period of time, naturally turned to focusing on peoples’ particulars and individual body languages “as affirmations or embodiments of their selves.” Goldblatt’s affinity was no accident: Working at his father’s men’s outfitting store in the 1950s, his awareness of posture, gesture and proportion—technical as it was—formed early and would accompany him throughout his life.
In this series we see hands resting on laps, crossed legs, the curved backs of sleepers on a lawn at midday, their fingers and feet relaxed, pausing from their usual occupations. This deeply contemplative work is framed by Ingrid de Kok’s poetry.
The photographs in "Particulars" were taken beginning in 1975, and the first edition of the book was published by Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg, in 2003. Goldblatt has revised Particulars for this new Steidl edition.