ABOUT Alternative Print Workshop
learn; create; be inspired!
Dennis da Silva and Janus Boshoff co-founded the Alternative Print Workshop in 2014. The Workshop is the result of a dream. Through the years of working together in the darkroom, Dennis and Janus often discussed the possibility of creating a dedicated workspace where they, and other artists, could produce work in beautiful old and antiquated printing processes. They envisioned a space where artists could learn these old processes, a space where artists could be inspired.
The Alternative Print Workshop (APW) functions as a working and a learning space. It consists of a fully equipped and large print workshop area as well as two dedicated traditional darkrooms. A large range of analogous photographic processes, historic as a well as contemporary, are practiced and taught. Digital imagery is fused with the old processes by means of inkjet negatives, and artists can thus create handmade contemporary imagery from digital technology. Supplementing APW’s range of photographic workshops, a number of artists host workshops in handcrafted art techniques such as printmaking, bookbinding, and papermaking. In addition to the tactile art of printmaking, APW hosts workshops on refining vision and inspiration with renowned artists such as Roger Ballen and Francki Burger.
The workshops are structured to fulfil various functions for different audiences, and range from in-depth and hands-on learning experiences for artists, enthusiasts, lecturers and students, to basic introductory and entertaining workshops for school, college and corporate groups.
All workshops consist of both theory and practical components, with emphasis placed on creative practical outcomes. The workshops are structured to allow for experimentation and exploration, and creative individualism is encouraged. Classes are small and personal attention is given to each participant throughout the process. Dennis and Janus are widely recognized in the South African photography industry as experts of analogue photographic and darkroom processes, and all artists presenting workshops were handpicked for their intricate knowledge and experience.
Most of the processes that APW teach can easily be applied within the home, studio or classroom environment. Some processes, such as the Cyanotype, Linocut or Bookbinding, require no special equipment or facilities. Others, such as the Pinhole and Creative Darkroom, do require a darkroom space but not specialised equipment. All materials required for these processes can be acquired from APW.
Dennis continues to process Black and White film and print images for photographers and artists, and Janus produces a full range of darkroom chemicals and bespoke historical process kits. Together they print in the historical processes including Platinum/Palladium, Salt, Cyanotype and Van Dyke Brown. Their doors are always open, they are renowned for their good coffee, and always enjoy meeting fellow monochrome enthusiasts. Simply call and go visit them.