Almost 130 years after the gold rush, Johannesburg continues to see people migrating from places far and wide in search of whatever fortune, or misfortune, awaits them in the infamous city of gold.
The idea of migration is central to street artist r1’s latest art intervention in New Doornfontein, Johannesburg titled Hidden Trophy – a 5x5m mandala installed on a street wall. The installation, situated at a t-junction, is made out of 100 reflective chevron street signs that come together in a colourful design that illuminates at night as cars drive by. If you look a little closer you’ll note the subliminal outline of a blue wildebeest head, a metaphoric ode to migration.
The piece is also the basis of a collaborative effort between r1 and film director Harold Hölscher, also titled Hidden Trophy. The video takes inspiration from Charles Bukowski’s poem “Roll the Dice” and reimagines it in the context of Johannesburg.
Director/editor: Harold Hölscher / Producer: Hermann Venter / Cinematographer: David Pienaar / Grade/SFX: Jannes Hendrikz / Sound and final mix: Markus Wormstorm / Additional wildlife footage: Serengeti: The Adventure by Reinhard Radke