This Folio Life: Documenting Nelson Mandela’s Long Walk to Freedom
Documenting and exposing the cruelty of apartheid was a difficult and dangerous task. Our edition of Long Walk to Freedom includes photographs from some of the great photographers who took those risks, including Dr Peter Magubane.
As a black photographer working under apartheid in South Africa, Magubane suffered frequent arrests and beatings by the police for taking photographs or refusing to destroy his photos. In 1974 he was put in solitary confinement for 586 days and upon release he was banned from taking photographs for five years. However, despite the threat to his freedom and safety, Magubane covered the horrors of the Soweto uprising in 1976 in order to show the world the brutality of the apartheid regime. Magubane later went on to become Nelson Mandela’s official photographer, documenting Mandela’s presidential journey and capturing touching moments with his family.
Our edition also includes photographs by the great Jürgen Schadeberg, a mentor to Magubane whilst working as chief photographer for Drum magazine. Jürgen endured threats and harassment from South African security forces but continued to capture iconic photographs of Mandela and of the events that were to shape the country.