The first thing that catches your eye is a young man inhaling deeply from a glue filled plastic bag, dinner ladies sharing secret conversations and a man’s scarred and tattooed arms folded in majestic defiance.
Pogus Caesar’s photographs unravel the simplicity of the ordinary and the mundane giving us a glimpse into the lives of people he has encountered on his travels.
Caesar has spent his long career travelling the world photographing diverse communities in places such as South and North Africa, USA, India, Albania and the West Indies. The straight forward grainy images provide little more than tone and detail. ‘Simplicity is what I prefer, that random second between the past and the future.’
‘Schwarz Flaneur ‘ is named after the unguarded moments that Caesar so strives to capture. These images are signature to much of Caesar’s work and his dedication to black and white film and an old 1980’s Canon Sure Shot camera. The term flâneur comes from the French masculine noun flâneur—which has the basic meanings of “stroller”, “lounger”, “saunterer”, “loafer”—which itself comes from the French verb flâner, which means “to stroll”.
Charles Baudelaire developed a derived meaning of flâneur—that of “a person who walks the city in order to experience it”. Schwarz, meaning the colour black in German.
SELECTED BIOGRAPHY: As a photographer and artist he has worked in countries including Spain, India, South America, Sweden, South Africa, UK, Albania and Jamaica documenting the lives of diverse communities. He has also photographed artists, musicians, poets, sportspeople and politicians. His photographs are in private and public collections such as the Victoria & Albert Museum, London; City Gallery, Leicester; Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield; Wolverhampton Art Gallery and Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery.
SELECTED EXHIBITIONS: Muzik Kinda Sweet: British Music Experience,02, London. That Beautiful Thing: Wolverhampton Art Gallery. Forward Ever – Backward Never: Artangel, London. Break In The Seal: Herbert Art Gallery, Coventry. Into The Open: Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield. Caribbean Expressions in Britain: Leicester Museum & Art Gallery. Pogus Caesar Paintings: Cartwright Hall, Bradford. instamatic Views of New York: Museum of Film & Photography, Bradford. Religion, Slavery and Diaspora: Horniman Museum & Garden, London Seeing Slavery: The Potteries Museum & Art Gallery, Stoke – on – Trent. Pattern Recognition: The City Gallery, Leicester. Staying Power: Black Cultural Archives, London, UK. Staying Power: Victoria & Albert Museum, London, UK.