The Southern Line train line snakes between Cape Town and Simonstown – 37 kilometres of some of the most spectacular scenery in South Africa. But talk about incongruities. The windows at times are so grimy that the mountains and ocean are mere smudges in the distance. Some of the modern coaches are spruced-up, others smeared with offensive graffiti. Businessmen in suits rub shoulders with bling hipsters; beggars share seats with tourists. Some commuters sit comfortably while others hang out the moving carriages, hoping to arrive at their station alive and on time.
Over 3.5 million commuters depend on the line monthly, but a late, idling, or cancelled train is common. Yet at times it all seems so smooth. Ticket office open, security guards patrolling, trains on schedule, and spotless coaches make for an effortless journey Down The Line.
Down The Line consists of 118 colour and black & white images portraying an honest reportage of the diversity in South Africa which include images of; the trains, stations, personnel and commuters from the first train in the morning until the last train at night. The 15 personal paragraphs accompanying the pictures -given by commuters- gives a clear understanding of South African commuting life on this well travelled line.
On very few occassions – if any- has a photographer been allowed to photograph this line making this photographic coffee table book unique. This book isn’t a normal “glossy” travel book but rather an artistic, authentic, photo-essay.