Ryan Cookson – Tell Them About Me


Tell Them About Me is the photographic series by Ryan Cookson exploring car culture in Soweto and the surrounding areas of Johannesburg, South Africa. 
In the late 1980s, BMW’s E30 models, specifically the 325i, became notorious through its association with criminal culture. These cars – known locally as ‘gusheshe’ – were often spun in circles both as an expression of skill, and as means of honouring the dead at funerals. By the early 1990s, this expression of gangster flamboyance morphed into a motorsport championed by the South African people – and it’s still practised in the throughout the country today.

Inspired by amateur videos of car spinners, Cookson traveled to Johannesburg twice – once in 2016 and again in 2017 – to document the participants of this unique motorsport. The resulting images offer a rare glimpse into this subculture. The publication also features a 24 page research archive of stills taken from amateur videos and a dual-purpose book jacket that folds into a 50 x 70 cm poster designed by New York-based artist Hassan Rahim.

180 pages, softcover, 22.5 x 18 cm, Knowledge Editions (Melbourne)