Much is not known about South African photographer Bob Gosani’s early life and sadly, details on how he passed away in 1972, in his late 30s, are difficult to find. But what is certain is that Gosani’s work made a profound and pivotal contribution to the anti-Apartheid regime in South Africa - most especially through his documentation of the ‘Tauza dance’, a humiliating and degrading act that black prisoners were forced to perform at The Fort prison in Hillbrow, to ensure that they concealed no contraband in any of their bodily orifices.
The iconic photographer, who dared to defy the Apartheid government by concealing his camera as he documented the lives of black people in the country in the 1950s, was born in Johannesburg in 1934. In the early 1950s he began his career in photojournalism at Drum magazine as an apprentice to Jürgen Schadeberg. In 1957, Gosani was involved in a serious car accident and lost a lung, a factor that may have contributed to his death at a young age in 1972.