Matabele man with shield and spear
W. Rausch of Bulawayo
A silver gelatin print showing a Matabele man in full war regalia, with headdress, spear and shield. Two other Matabele men are visible in the background, seated around a metal cooking pot on a fire. Titled ‘Native Warrior’ in the negative and numbered ‘152.’
Photographed by W. Rausch of Bulawayo.
By the middle of the 1890s, the photographer W. Rausch had established a studio in Bulawayo on Abercorn Street opposite the Bank of Africa, where, according to advertisements he placed in local newspapers, ‘All kinds of photographic work undertaken – groups photographed in town or country’ (Bulawayo Sketch, 21 November 1896). He also offered for sale ‘native’ portraits, photographic Christmas cards, and albums depicting the principal streets and buildings of Bulawayo.
Dimensions: the print measures 8.1” by 5.9” (20.6 cm by 15.1 cm) and is mounted on a slightly larger piece of cut-down album page that has been neatly separated from its reverse side by a professional conservator.
Condition: a crack in the original negative appears as a black line in the foreground but the print is otherwise in fine condition, although a little indistinct in the area of the sitter’s face.