The Crest Hotel

A tale of despair within inner city Johannesburg.

Today I begin by writing about a project that I completed in 2008. So yes this is dated. This is work that has been seen. It has in fact appeared in 3 film festivals already. So it has had an audience. The Grahamstown film festival in South Africa, showed it in 2009. It appeared a year later at some obscure French event that for the life of me I cannot remember, and finally at the Copenhagen Documentary film festival DOX in 2011. This was the highlight for me. It’s appearance there came about by a very unexpected email from American art photographer Nan Goldin who lives and works in New York, Berlin and Paris. Bottom line is she is famous!!!

Writing to me personally her email went something like this;.

Hello, I’m Nan Goldin, I don’t usually go on Youtube, but I heard about your piece, The Crest Hotel, and had no other way to see it. I have not been so impressed by somebody’s work as far as I can recall. This is a very unusual request for me, but is there anyway I can get a copy, I’ve been asked to curate a selection of films for the CPH:DOX documentary film festival in Copenhagen in November of this year”.

To see the multi-media film. Click here:

https://youtu.be/7-4-qAkzD08

Needless to say I made sure Nan got a copy. I have decided to blog about this film, and serialize it on Instafram not go thrash out the narrative and try make some moral judgement on its merits, but rather the back story. How it came to be. Why it came to be. And of course ruminate somewhat on it’s bizarre twist. So bizarre in fact that I think the twist merits an essay all of its own.

Richard Mark Dobson·
16 min
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38 cards

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