All is not what it seems. That's the takeaway from this incredibly interesting series called Fictional Cape Town by Montpellier, France-born and based photographer Cecila Mella. As Africa's most popular tourist destination, Cape Town is known to be a creative hot bed which springs naturally from the city's multiethnic population. With both natural beauty and a thriving metropolitan area, Cape Town offers something for everyone...including the companies that come to it with their own agenda in mind.
"Cape Town has a surprisingly large film industry," says Cecila Mella on her website. "It’s not like Bollywood or Nollywood (Nigeria), where homegrown feature-stories dominate. Most shoots are in fact advertisements for foreign companies selling everything from chewing gum to yoghurt (the favourable exchange rate and sunny climate make it worth the long trip to the tip of Africa). What is fascinating is that these companies turn locations in Cape Town -- an iconic African city -- into European, British or American scenes. So a characteristic wine farm is transformed into a Dutch homestead, or a Long Street cafe becomes a Parisian bistro for a day or two.
"The work documents the way the industry semi-colonises slices of the city. The images, crooked landscapes of a crooked place, play with the friction between reality and fiction while portraying the area with humor and marvel."