According to the biblical narrative, the first vintner was Noah who planted a vine after the flood waters receded. Since ancient times, viticulture and winemaking, like farming in general, has been dominated by men.
Yet in recent years, both in South Africa and globally, with a blend of determination, passion, a keen palate and an ability to think creatively many women have succeeded in closing the gender gap in the world of wine.
But, despite these advances, often the subject of ‘Women in Wine’ comes up in the media only at predictable times, usually before National Women’s Day.
David Silverman’s current project aims to go beyond this stereotype and recognise the contribution of a select group of women winemakers and viticulturalists in South Africa, not for their gender but for their contribution to the industry, for their dedication to viticultural heritage and excellence, and their elegant, creative and exciting wines.
“An award-winning photographer, a selection of his photographs from this project will be displayed at the Terroirs d ‘Images 2020 exhibit, and will be published in the Revue des Oenologues as well as the Wine & Business Club magazine. This will do much to increase the profile of South Africa’s women winemakers and viticulturists and, by extension, that of women in other areas of the industry: sales, marketing, distribution and logistics, technical and scientific support and education, to name a few,” said Cathy van Zyl MW.
Silverman is also a contributing photographer at Getty Images with his wine, travel and lifestyle pictures, and a wider edit of the photographs from this project will be uploaded to Getty’s international photography archive for editorial use worldwide.