"My education in photography was not only based in school, where they teach you, but also in the people I photograph."

- Lindokuhle Sobekwa

b. 1995

South African

Based in Johannesburg, South Africa


Available for commissions
& assignments

Lindokuhle Sobekwa was born in Katlehong, Johannesburg, in 1995. He is of a generation of South African photographers who were “born free” after the first democratic elections of 1994. In 2012, he participated in the “Of Soul and Joy Project,” an educational program teaching high school learners photography in the township of Thokoza. During this time, he started photographing birthday parties and weddings, and came to the realization that photography could be an important tool to tell stories that concerned and interested him.

Sobekwa exhibited his work for the first time in 2013, as part of a group show in Thokoza organized by the Rubis Mécénat foundation. His photo essay “Nyaope” was published in the Mail & Guardian in 2014, as well as in Vice magazine’s annual Photo Issue and in the daily De Standaard; it was also exhibited at the Turbine Art Fair (Johannesburg). In 2015, Sobekwa was awarded a scholarship to study at the Market Photo Workshop, where he completed his foundation course. That same year, his Nyaope series was exhibited in the group show Free From My Happiness, with an accompanying book, at the International Photo Festival of Ghent and a subsequent traveling exhibition. In 2017, Sobekwa was selected by the Magnum Foundation’s Photography and Social Justice Program to develop the project I carry Her photo with Me. In 2018 he received the Magnum Foundation Fund to continue with his long-term project Nyaope.

Sobekwa’s work has been exhibited in South Africa, Iran, Norway, the US and the Netherlands. In 2021, he completed a residency at A4 Foundation in Cape Town, which culminated in a two-person exhibition with Mikhael Subotzky titled Tell It to the Mountains. In 2022, he opened his first museum show at Huis Marseille (Amsterdam), featuring the body of work Umkhondo. Tracing Memory, as part of the summer program The Beauty of the World So Heavy. His handmade photobook, I carry Her photo with Me, was included in African Cosmologies at the FotoFest Biennial Houston (2020), curated by Mark Sealy. In 2018, Sobekwa was nominated to join Magnum Photos, where he was named a full member in 2022. In 2023, he was awarded the inaugural John Kobal Foundation Fellowship. Maintaining the scrapbook aesthetic of the handmade edition for his first photobook, I carry Her photo with Me was published in 2024.

Selected works

Theory & Practice

Lindokuhle Sobekwa’s Documentation of South Africa’s Drug Epidemic and the Aftermath of Violence

Lindokuhle Sobekwa

The 2018 Magnum nominee discusses his route into photography, the impact of South Africa's history of violence on his practice, and his ongoing personal projects

Open story
Stay in touch
Learn about online and offline exhibitions, photography fairs, gallery events, plus fine print news and activities, on a monthly basis.
Get fortnightly tips and advice articles, find out about the latest workshops, free online events and on-demand courses.
Stay up to date every Thursday with Magnum photographers’ activities, new work, stories published on the Magnum website, and the latest offerings from our shop.