Books: South African Township Barbershops and Salons by Simon Weller
South African Township Barbershops and Salons is a new book by photographer Simon Weller that documents the colorful art of South African barbershop culture with intimate photographs of DIY shops, interviews with barbershop artists, and historical backgrounds of the townships. The book features beautiful photographs of the little known barbershop art signage in areas such as Johannesburg, various rural townships, Durban, and Cape Town. Barbershops play an intricate role in society as a social medium for community discussion, small business economy, and art. Artists are asked to paint pictures of everything from shop names and hair styles to American pop icons. Sign artist Garth Walker describes the styles barbershop artists design and why its important, "We like it because it looks good and makes you feel good and that's what graphic design is supposed to do. There is no concept, it's just joyous. That is the bedrock of the African approach to just about everything, if you like it, you do it." See more pictures from the book after the jump and then grab yourself a copy here.