Additional Images

“South Africa is a fractured, schizophrenic, wounded and troubled place”, says Pieter Hugo. How can one live there? He feels like a “piece of colonial driftwood”, which is arguably what opens his eyes to the contradictions and conflicts, for the areas of friction and tension that exist within (South) African society. In “The Hyena Men Series” (2005-2007), Pieter Hugo exemplified the innate drama of post-colonial society for the first time. In Nigeria, he found a group of young men living with hyenas, baboons and snakes. Following a tradition, they travel around as actors with their animals and sell traditional medicine. Their performances create a sensation and enthrall audiences. In his shots, taken against the backdrop of contourless shanty towns, Pieter Hugo focuses on the men’s relationship with their animals. The clearly composed photographs are unsettling images that symbolize the extreme tension between nature and culture, between humans and animals, tradition and modernity, city and wilderness that characterizes urban sub-Saharan life today.

“Even though it feels like I've been doing it forever, I am still daunted. It is easier to alienate a stranger than it is to get to know a stranger. You first have to explain who you are and what your intentions are, and then answer to the inevitable WHY? Then the act of persuasion, coming to an agreement. The subject has to be willing to give something. I don't want it to feel like the image was taken with me only taking. It needs and I hope for a moment of voluntary vulnerability.” - Pieter Hugo
Priska Pasquer Gallery, Cologne, Germany

2006

Presence, Michael Stevenson Gallery, | Cape Town, South Africa

2006

Galerie Bertrand & Gruner, | Geneva, Switzerland

2007

Pieter Hugo: The Hyena & Other Men, | Yossi Milo Gallery, New York, NY

2008

The Hyena and Other Men, | FOAM_Fotografiemuseum, Amsterdam, The Netherlands God’s Time is the Best, Cokkie Snoei Gallery, Rot

2008

Portraits, Open Eye Gallery, | Liverpool, UK

2008

Works 2002-2007, Galerie Bertrand & Gruner, | Geneva, Switzerland

2009

Pieter Hugo: Selected Works, | Tinglado 2, Tarragona, Spain

2010

The Hyena and Other Men, | Photographic Centre Peri, Turku, Finland

2010

On Reality and Other Stories, | Forest Centre Culturel, BRASS, Brussels, Belgium

2010

On reality and Others Stories, | Galerie Municipale du Château d'Eau Toulouse, France Toulouse, France

2010

The Hyena and Other Men, | Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Herzliya, Israel

2012

This Must Be the Place, touring exhibition, The Hague Museum of Photography, The Netherlands; Musée de l'Elysée, Lausanne, Switzerland | Touring exhibition: The Hague Museum of Photography, The Netherlands; Musée

2014

This Must Be the Place | Centro Atlántico De Arte Moderno, Las Palmas, Spain (touring exhibition); Fundação Calouste Gulbenki

2016

Pieter Hugo: Thirteen Works, Gallery of Photography, | Dublin, Ireland

2017

Pieter Hugo: Between the Devil & the Deep Blue Sea, Museum für Kunst und Kulturgeschichte | , Dortmund, Germany

2017

Verisimilar Worlds, The West African Works, 2005 -2010, Museum of Contemporary Art, | Zagreb, Croatia

2017

Pieter Hugo: Between the Devil & the Deep Blue Sea, Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg, | Wolfsburg, Germany

2018

Pieter Hugo: Between the Devil & the Deep Blue Sea, Museu Coleção Berardo, | Lisbon, Portugal

2007

The Hyena & Other Men | Prestel Publishing