Guy Tillim was born in Johannesburg in 1962. He completed a degree in commerce at the University of Cape Town, but turned to full-time photography instead. In 1986 he joined Afrapix, a collective of South African photographers that supplied news and feature images -- notably about the struggle against apartheid -- to the local and international media. In that period he worked for Reuters in South Africa, and he also worked for Agence France Presse in the run-up to the first democratic elections in South Africa in 1994.
From 1990 onwards Tillim broadened the scope of his work to Africa and elsewhere. He worked on assignment for various international publications, but also pursued his own projects, resulting in a number of major documentary essays From 1998 onwards he has increasingly concentrated on his own work. He now lives in Cape Town.
Tillim’s work has been exhibited throughout the world, and is held in various permanent collections.