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Tjailatyd: At the end of a (dis)honest day's work

2017 Competition entry

André Rose


Digital print
63 cm x 93.5 cm
R2 450

South Africa has one of the largest Gini Coefficients in the world. The rift between rich and poor is widened even more as a result of unemployment. The unemployment rate is up to 45% in some instances. The prospects for jobs are dismal. This status quo feeds the social injustices that characterises this societal landscape. “Tjailatyd” is a colloquialism referring to the end of the work day. The title further plays on the English expression, ‘an honest day’s work’. The milieu of the artwork is almost static but forces the viewer to get drawn into the moment. The viewer is left wondering where the owner of the barrow loaded with equipment is. Is the miner collecting more equipment? Has he been captured? The scene is innocent but charged with meaning and controversy. The plight of artisanal mining edges precariously between social equity and capitalist divide. The black and white image strips the scene of colour forcing the viewer to consider the essence of the message: Is this an honest or a (dis)honest day’s work?