Berney Perez was born in 1948 in Cape Town, Western Province (now Western Cape) and raised here. He worked as an office machine technician while studying photography under the tutelage of photographer, Michael Barry. Perez continued to work as a freelance photographer, working mainly in and around the Karoo area in South Africa. He contributed to the Staffrider exhibition of 1985. His photographs included in South Africa: The Cordoned Heart focus on the “Coloured population” of Beaufort West. These are accompanied by text from the 1986 Second Carnegie Inquiry into Poverty and Development which details the poverty and poor living conditions of people living in the “Coloured” township of Rustdene, Beaufort West in the early 1980s.