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Fire Walker:
William Kentridge, Gerard Marx

Artwork date(s): 2011

William Kentridge  - artist (and in title)
Gerhard Marx  - artist (and in title)
Oliver Barstow  - (edited and designed by)
Bronwyn Law-Viljoen  - (edited with an introduction by)

Description: The book is contained in a half-slipcase in red which is laid into a wooden box with a steel cut-out of the Fire Walker inset into the cover. The box also contains a print by Gerard Marx titled Foot Map and another by William Kentridge titled Goldmann's South African Mining and Finance, each in a gray wrapper

Medium: Relief and lithograph, collage, metal inlay in wood
Measurements: Box = 452 x 357mm
Inscription: Signed by the artists.
Edition: #27/40.

Category: South African Artist`s Book in larger publication
Type: Codex & other media in box
Sub-type: Artists and multiple producers
Theme(s): Complex combination of texts and images in socio-economic commentary associated with inner-city Johannesburg and the meaning of public art in public spaces

Place publication: Johannesburg
Publisher: Fourthwall Books
ISBN: 978-0-9869850-1-0

Reference noteThe regular edition of the book is contained in the half-slipcase in red. The special edition contains the book, two prints both numbered 27/40 in a box also numbered 27/40.

Of importance to the content of the project, Kentridge and Marx state about the women fire walkers:

'They evoke an industrial era - urban and rural mores colliding in the wildly textured and richly flavoured economic melting pot of the city. Like the disappearing mine dumps, the fire walker is a twentieth-century Johannesburg archetype that is fast fading from the picture as the city clutches at new markets and slicker incarnations for the new millennium - The archaic constancy of another time stands out awkwardly against the backdrop of Park Station's relentless radical transits. Gritty tracks run between discarded Kentucky Fried Chicken cartons and burned-out taxi tyres facilitating a daily pageant of arrivals and departures. Now we're getting warmer, closer to the inconstant spirit of the place. Amidst the bustle of street traders and commuter lines along Pim Street, the smell of roasting mielies and peanuts at the corner of Pim and Sauer, adverts for `Doctor Kidda, the Herbalist` the pungent smell of urine, waste and still water in dark corners and pavement potholes, the hordes of pedestrian traffic across Harrison and Bree, the comings and goings of taxis within and around the Metro Mall taxi precinct, I had never really noticed her before'.

Ref: GB/13014


Now you see her, now you don't
 Alexandra J. Dodd (essay by)

Six Conversations
 William Kentridge (interview with)
 Stewart Barstow (interview with)
 Oliver Barstow (interview by)
 Lael Bethlehem (interview with)
 Jurie van der Westhuizen (interview with)
 John Munday (interview with)
 Gerhard Marx (interview with)

Constructing Fire Walker
 John Hodgkiss (photo essay by)

Urban Mythologies
 Mpho Matsipa (essay by)

Three Fire Walkers: A Photo Essay
 Bronwyn Law-Viljoen (text by)
 Ben Law-Viljoen (photo essay by)

Walking with / Walking alongside / Walking against?
 Zen Marie (essay by)
 Jonathan Cane (essay by)

Six Monuments: A Photo Essay
 Oliver Barstow (text by)
 Alastair McLachlan (photo essay by)

Ma Firewalker and Mr Typewriter-Head: Maps, Marx and Kentridge
 Mark Gevisser (essay by)

Total images: 8

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