This is a truly fascinating video. The Essop’s are brothers who wish to show the realities of their life as Muslims, and the conflicts they feel between their religion and their desire to participate in aspects of western culture. A key challenge was squaring their religions view of the inclusion of people in images with the need to include people – their answer being to act out all the roles themselves - producing a result through multiple exposures.
Again I come back to – the integrity of the image as a document depends on the integrity of the artist. All the scenes they produce are totally fabricated, because they are the only people in them, and yet they work as documents (for me anyway) because I have faith that they are truly reflecting the world as they see it. It’s an interesting kind of subjectivity that they produce as well, because there working method appears to involve both of them talking through ideas about how to convey a concept until they achieve a single solution – in other words the subjectivity of both of them is incorporated into the final image.
A final point – their images are not so different in overall concept to my 4 seasons landscape shot from the previous course.
Figures and Fictions: Hasan and Husain Essop; V&A Channel, Victoria and Albert Museum: http://www.vam.ac.uk/channel/people/photography/figures_and_fictions_hasan_and_husain_essop/