_Wayne Barker


Before the emergence of the city street photographer, it was customary for most black South Africans to have their photo - I. D. portraits taken in modest shop fronts. Usually the room would consist of basic photo lighting equipment and Polaroid and standard stills camera. In the pastel drawing portraits of Gunther Herbst from the eighties, Customer’s are represented in front of red or yellow curtains stained and dirty after long term use. Due to massive influx in the city and increased demand for these portraits, the make shift photographic studio’s of the eighties and early nineties have been replaced by the street corner photographer. These days you will find four to five photographers at any given street corner in the city centre. A slightly rarer version is the mobile studio, which seems to be more of a novelty, but still a big breadwinner.

With the use of a hired mini-bus, Barker will combine several themes from this exhibition into one. The mini-bus will function as a make shift photographic studio where people will be able to enter and have their Polaroid portrait taken against a variety of backdrop scenes of Johannesburg.

Location: Inner city – Tour Guides public sites



 Born: Pretoria, South Africa, 1963

Wayne Cahill Barker trained at Pretoria Technikon, the Michaelis School of Fine Art in Cape Town, and the Ecole des Beaux Arts in Luminy, Marseille.


Solo Exhibitions

Memorias intimas marcas (Group Exhibition): 1988, Electric workshop,

Johannesburg, and the African Window Museum, Pretoria.

All washed up in Africa: 1998, Millennium Gallery, Pretoria.

Kunst ist Kinderspielen: Collaboration with Barbara Hollub, 1998, Kunsthalle, Krems.

All Washed Up in Africa: 1997, Gallery Frank Hanel, Cape Town and Frankfurt.

All Washed Up in Africa: Performance with Ian Waldeck, 1997, French Pavilion, Venice Beinnale.

Fin de Siecle: 1997, Nantes.

Nothing gets Lost in the Universe: 1996, FIG, Johannesburg, and Gallery Frank Hanel, Frankfurt.

Peace through Blood: 1994, FIG, Pretoria.

Coke Adds Life: 1993, Everard Read Contemporary Gallery, Johannesburg.

Something New Always Comes Out of Africa: 1993, Newtown Gallery, Johannesburg.

Three Bodies of Love: 1992, Everard Read Contemporary Gallery, Johannesburg.

Images on Metal: 1987, Market Theatre Galleries, Johannesburg.



Selected Group Exhibitions

KultureAXE: 1998-2000, International Summer Academy and Art Symposium.

Kliene Plastiche Triennale: 1998, Stuttgart, curator Werner Meyer.

Vilkskas Ateleir: 1998, African Window Musuem, Pretoria.

Trade Routes, History and Geography: 1997, 2nd Johannesburg Biennale, curator Okwui Enwezor.

Colours: 1996, Haus der Kulturen der welt, Berlin.

Groundswell: 1996, Mermaid Gallery, London. Black Looks, White Myths: 1995,1st Johannesburg Biennale, curator Octavio Zaya.

Laager: 1995, First Johannesburg Biennale, curator Wayne Barker.

Spring Time in Chile: 1995, Museum of Contemporary Art, curator Wayne Barker.

Scurvy: 1995, Castle of Good Hope, Cape Town.

Can Art Exist Alone: Art and Politics: 1995, Pretoria Art Museum.

Brown and Green: 1995, Pretoria Art Museum.

Klapperkop:1989, South African Association of Arts, Pretoria.

Breaking Down the Wall: The Pierneef Series, 1989, FIG, Johannesburg, and Michaelis Art Gallery, Cape Town.



Founded Famous International Gallery (FIG) – South Africa’s first Contemporary Art Gallery, 1989-1995.

Workshop with underprivileged children, in collaboration with Haus der Kultern de Welt, 1996, East Berlin.

Art Skills Training for underprivileged children, in collaboration with streetwise,1994, Johannesburg.


Selected Publications

Trade Routed: History and Geography: 1997, Matthew Debord(ed). Catalogue of the 2nd Johannesburg Biennale.

Contemporary South African Art: The Gencor Collection: 1997, Kendell Geers (ed).

Art in South Africa: The future Present: 1996, Sue Williamson and Ashraf Jamal (ed).

Africus: First Johannesburg Biennale: 1995, Candice Breitz (ed).

Back Looks and White Myths: 1995, Octavio Zaya ed.