16/04/2009. Blikkiesdorp. Cape Flats, Cape Town. South Africa.
Ouma Magdalena ( 90) is the eldest resident of Blikkiesdorp on the Cape Flats. She has been on the housing list for over 17 years.
The residents of Blikkiesdorp live in one of the poorest communities on the Cape Flats and are subjected to violent crimes, rapes and robberies.
Still the community of Blikkiesdorp keeps their heads and spirits up. 4000 People call these steel structures and the sand dunes surrounding it home. They live in close proximity to each other and the family atmosphere that binds all these poor individuals together brought tears to my eyes. The monotone structures and grey palette of the scenery leaves you with little to be excited about. It was not until I met Ouma that my mind changed. I was seeing a different world through my lens and I was learning how these unfortunate people can have such colorful lives amidst the emptiness and grays. Even though all the heartache and pain that these people are suffering breaks your heart, the sense of positivity and will to survive is contagious. Many community members run their own little shops to provide the necessities for every day survival. Living from hand to hand, day to day. Caring for and looking after each other. I was moved by the simplicity of the people, their will to survive, the feeling of community. I left Blikkiesdorp wondering what it is that binds people together in difficulty like that.
Ouma has since passed away, she died of severe TB and starvation, my work in the community continues and Ouma is a big inspiration for this project. At the moment 16000 people live in the camp.