Zanele Muholi (born in Umlazi, Durban, South Africa, 1972) is a visual activist and photographer, cofounder of the Forum for the Empowerment of Women, and founder of Inkanyiso, a forum for queer and visual media. Muholi has won numerous awards for their work, including the ICP Infinity Award for Documentary and Photojournalism (2016); the Fine Prize for an emerging artist at the 2013 Carnegie International; a Prince Claus Award (2013); and both the Casa Africa award for best female photographer and a Fondation Blachere award at Les Rencontres de Bamako biennial of African photography (2009). Their Faces and Phases series was shown at dOCUMENTA (13) and the 55th Venice Biennale and was shortlisted for the Deutsche Boerse Photography Prize in 2015. Muholi is an honorary professor at the University of the Arts Bremen, Germany. They are represented by Stevenson Gallery, Johannesburg, and Yancey Richardson Gallery, New York.
"The first thing to note about Zanele Muholi: Somnyama Ngonyama: Hail the Dark Lioness is that it begins before you open it. The striking cover portrait itself--"Ntozakhe II, Parktown, Johannesburg," from 2016--demands ample time to be taken in...This is how the book starts on you, its front and back cover working together to prepare you for what lies within. A hint at its insides."--Yrsa Daley-Ward, The New York Times Book Review