Fanie Jason

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Biographical information

Synopsis:

Photographer

First name: 
Fanie
Last name: 
Jason
Date of birth: 
15 May 1953
Location of birth: 
Heathfield, Cape Town, South Africa

Fanie Jason was born on the 15 May 1953, Heathfield, Cape Town. Under the South African Group Areas Act, Jason's family was forced to move to the black township of Guguletu in 1960. Jason's interest in photography developed after borrowing a friend's camera as a teenager. 

He started work as a freelance photographer in 1975 to supplement his income as a bible salesman. Jason's photography career took off in the early eighties when he worked for Drum and Pace magazine in Cape Town. Jason's photographs have appeared in most South African newspapers: Die Burger, Cape Times, Cape Argus, Rapport, Sunday Times, City Press and Tribute Magazine. Some of his photographs have also appeared in international publications such as Time Magazine, London Times, Observer, Guardian, Daily Mail and The Evening Standard.

Jason's assignments have enabled him to travel extensively. He covered the first democratic elections across South Africa in 1994. He has documented genocide in Rwanda, street children in Rio de Janeiro, the conflicts of the West Banks and the crisis in Kosovo. His photography has also taken him to New York, London, Paris and various African countries. Early last year he travelled to the Ganges River in India to document the Kumbh Mela religious festival.

Jason has taken part in various exhibitions nationally and internationally and in 1999 he won several photo awards including the prestigious Adbul Sharif award. The following year, on of Jason's picture essays won South Africa's Fuji Press Award.

His most recent accolade was a Judges' Special Recognition Award in the 2002 International fund for Documentary Photograph (Fifty Crows Foundation) for his Aids essay ' Life in Denial'. Most recently Jason was invited, together with the world's top 100 photojournalists, to participate in an ambitious photograph 'event' A Day in the Life of Africa. A selection of the images would appear in a book of the same title.

Last updated : 01-Nov-2016

This article was produced for South African History Online on 17-Feb-2011

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