This exhibition of new work by photographer Chris Saunders presents S’Phara Phara, a photo essay that documents the The Real Actions Pantsula Dance Crew from Orange Farm.
S’Phara Phara is originally derived from the sound that trains make when riding over railway sleepers describing the constant and rhythmic knocking sound over sleepers. This has been adopted to describe the sound of dancers feet when they are dancing Pantsula, an energetic township style particular to South Africa.
First published in Colours Magazine, this essay extends concerns that Saunders developed whilst on a residency in Italy at Fabrica in 2010, and fits into his larger documentary oeuvre that includes The Smarteez of Soweto and the Shangaan Electro Scene.
Through Saunders exposé of the Real Actions Dance Crew, its vitality is revealed. The Real Actions Dance Crew have performed around the world and most recently at the opening ceremony of the 2010 FIFA World Cup. In this exhibition Saunders goes into the heart of Orange Farm to investigate how this collective, now in its third generation, has transformed the lives of its members through the medium of dance.