A native of Johannesburg who now lives in Cape Town, artist Pieter Hugo describes himself as "a political-with-a-small-p photographer . . . it's hard not to be as soon as you pick up a camera in South Africa." The images in his most recent book, Permanent Error, were shot in Ghana at an enormous dump for obsolete technology shipped there from industrialized Western countries. We are brought face to face with the people and domestic animals that inhabit an arid, poisoned wasteland of our old monitors, discarded hard drives, and other technological remains.
Hugo, a self-taught photographer, won the 2008 Discovery Award at the distinguished Recontres d'Arles festival and the 2011 Seydou Keita Award at the 9th Recontres de Bamako African. Earlier series include the hyena men of Nigeria; portraits of extras from Nollywood, the Nigerian feature film industry; and "Messina/Musina," which portrays a trucking and mining town near the Zimbabwe border where migrant labor, prostitution, and AIDS abound.