Unfinished City


Unfinished city


Johannesburg was never meant to be. Born in 1886, it was the place where poor men came to make fortunes mining for gold. It was not a place to live. The Transvaal's mineral wealth prompted one of humanity's ugliest debacles–the Anglo-Boer War from–from 1899 to 1902. The city of Randlords was only meant to be mined, and then left behind.

Johannesburg is still a place of booms and slumps, of new rich and the old.

"We are none of us here for the benefit of our health. Money making and money grabbing is the alpha and the omega of those resident fields..."

Clive Chipkins, in his book "Joburg Styles" quoting a miner from a newsclipping in 1893


Participants featured in Unfinished City:

I Was Shot in Joburg http://www.iwasshot.com

Adjaye Associates http://www.adjaye.com

Daffonchio & Associates Architects http://www.daffonchio.co.za

Naadira Patel, Inner City Colouring Books

Jared Hurwitz https://www.behance.net/jaredza811cd2

Zahira Asmal http://thecityagency.co.za

Bheki Dube http://curiocitybackpackers.com

Sean Gaylard, Blank Ink Design

SASAI, South African Street Artists Initiative, http://sasai-jozi.com/

Nozuko Mapoma, Dear Johannesburg

Kevin Krapf, Joburg Archipelago

Noero Architects, http://www.noeroarchitects.com/



Books featured or referenced:

“Johannesburg One Hundred” by Ellen Palestrant 

“The Barnett Collection: Volume II South Africa and Johannesburg at the Turn of the Century” by The Star

“Movement Johannesburg” edited by Zahira Asmal & Guy Trangoš

“Invisible Cities” by Italo Calvino 

“Lost and Found in Johannesburg: A Memoir” by Mark Gevisser 

“Portrait with Keys” by Ivan Vladislavic

“Welcome to Our Hillbrow” by Phaswane Mpe 

“Ways of Dying” by Zakes Mda 

“Johannesburg: The Elusive Metropolis” edited by Sarah Nuttall and Achille Mbembe 

“After Tears” by Niq Mhlongo 

“Writing the City into Being” by Bronwyn Law-Viljoen and Lindsay Bremner 

“Rogue Urbanism” edited by Edgar Pieterse and AbdouMaliq Simone

“Afropolis” by by Kerstin Pinther and Larissa Forster

“A City Refracted” by Graeme Williams

“Soweto” by Jodi Bieber

“Native Nostalgia” by Jacob Dlamini

Unfinished City is supported by Propertuity, the developers of the Maboneng Precinct. Read more about the relationship here.