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Sunday Times Fiction Prize: Tymon Smith Interviews Ivan Vladislavic

TJ/Double Negative (US Edition)Double NegativeIvan Vladislavice is shortlisted for the 2011 Sunday Times Fiction Prize for his novel Double Negative, which first appeared in a two-volume set with photographer David Goldblatt’s TJ, and has now been published in a stand-alone edition.

The Sunday Times books editor, Tymon Smith, spoke to Vladislavic about his work and collaboration with Goldblatt:

This collaboration took about five years, but was there ever a fixed idea about how things between you and Goldblatt were going to work?

No. I had done some writing for David before, but not of this kind. I had written a couple of short pieces that eventually went into Portrait with Keys; I wrote a sequence of crits which were published in a catalogue called 51 years in 2001. Over the years we began to talk in a vague way about doing something together, but I can’t remember exactly how it came about that we began to talk more seriously. I think it was when David began to put together a book of his Joburg photographs. That was five or six years ago.

Have you always been interested in photography as an art form?

I became interested in photography when I worked at Ravan Press and was involved with Staffrider because social-documentary photography was a strong component of the magazine. Over the years an interest in art photography has developed from going to galleries and looking at art.

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