Mdantsane is a unique, vibrating, eclectic, African place. Follow us on a pilgrimage to Mdantsane to discover the street culture, fashion, food, people, music, homes, taverns, humor, businesses, history and what's hot in the second biggest township in South-Africa, located close to the city of East London in the Province of the Eastern Cape. Join us on this journey while we capture the spirit of this amazing place for you in the here and in the now. We are going to introduce you to many individuals, artists, musicians, groups and associations.
They are the HEROES OF DAILY LIFE. They are the people who create, innovate and improve their life and their stories deserve to be told. This is a place for only good and positive stories of humanity, that will send out a message of courage, endurance and strength to the world through their pictures and words.

Friday, June 8, 2012

The Mdantsane Way Hardcover - A Long Way

The South African Hardcover Edition of The Mdantsane Way has finally been born.

The Mdantsane Way
Hardcover cloth bound
Extral large print 30 cm x 25 cm
241 pages all color photography
120 mg matte high quality paper 
with ISBN number

Two copies of " The Mdantsane Way", one bound in ShweShwe fabric and the second one in African Wax fabric

If i would say now to you, that it has been easy, I would tell one of the biggest lies of my existence. The photographic documentary or coffee table book (whatever you would like to call it)  "The Mdantsane Way" has been one of the most challenging and demanding projects that I have ever undertaken. If not the most difficult one. It was the project, that I have throroughly underestimated.

But it is live and alive. I believed entirely that it was worth it, when a friend said to me looking at it for the first time: this book is so beautiful! 

Each and every book is handbound by a professional bookbinder and covered in a beautiful " African dress". We have chosen the South Africa shweshwe range and a selection of traditional fabrics called "African Wax" that originate from West Africa. Each book is cloth-bound in a different fabric. Each book is individual and unique. 

We wanted this book to portray the beauty, the diversity and the colors of Africa. When I first pronounced my wish, to have a costume made cloth cover, using for each book a different fabric and pattern, the book binder said this has really not been done. But today, even this extravagant idea of mine has been realized.

At this point it is time for me to express my gratitude and to thank the ones who have walked the way with me and never stopped, and who made it possible for me to achieve what I wanted to achieve. 

With all my heart I thank my very good and dear friend Innocent Ugue for designing the layout of this book exactly as I imagined it and dreamed of it. I thank him for his never ending patience, for re-working and correcting the manuscript over and over again for months.
I thank him for being this great guy who endured all my caprices and artistic inspirations with a smile on his face and who never lost his passion for this book.  
It is a huge and complicated job to do a layout of such a complex book. I wanted colors and Innocent, you have given me my colors - although you are a guy who likes shades of blue and brown. You are an awesome graphic designer and the greatest person on earth to work with. You have done the job of a whole team of professionals. Without you, the book would have never seen the light of the day. Innocent, you rock my world!

In the book the reader can find some of the stories and pictures that I have published on this blog but there are also a lot of new and never published images. 

I thank my parents, who never said once that this was not going to bring me any money, and that I should rather get a job again. I thank them for supporting me all the way, especially my beloved father, one of the greatest poets and most fascinating men on earth, who does not know and does not want ot know how to send an email or start a computer
He said : " I'd rather have a couple of bottles of red wine less, if that book can be published one day and I can hold it in my hand ".This is huge because every great poet needs his read wine. Dad, you can now hold this book in your hands!   

I thank my brother Ccideron, the Rockstar, the one and only, the extraordinary. I thank him for all the 66's, 33's and 99's and 111.11. He knows what I am talking about. Simply the best brother!

I thank especially my aunt Renate, the ever young one, who has been the rock of Gibraltar in my life. All my problems just shatter and burst in front of the unconditional love that she has been sending my way her whole life, wherever I was and am in this world.

I thank my mother, the strong one, who is the scale, the balance of all our lives, the guardian of our souls. There can be no greater compliment! I have said years ago that my mother should receive knighthood and I have already given it to her. 

Pelisa, David and each and every man and woman from Mdantsane. I can say no more. I have said everything about you in the book. Because of you the book exists !

I thank all my animals for bringing me such my joy and cheering me up.  

A combined effort has created something beautiful!

That is all that matters and thats all I wanted! 

Bless you all !

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