Egoli – The City Of Gold, photo essay by Enrico Doria
Egoli, the city of gold, is one of many names of Johannesburg and still today tells about the dramatic and poignant story of the South African mines and the apartheid regime around which the industry has been enhanced.
But Johannesburg is especially the most populous and economically most important city of the country and perhaps it is the representation of the complex contradictions of South Africa, often violent and sudden. In the post apartheid years, the city has tried to find its identity and to invent a new story: it was a mosaic of opposite souls, consisting of over six million people (whose number is increasing day by day due to the influx of illegal immigrants who come from all over Africa), who speak a dozen languages, from Afrikaans, Zulu, English into street language, a language invented cross daily, which draws a bit from all languages and just talking here.
A city-lab, then, which is divided between great wealth and deep misery and that is moving towards a new model of integration and peaceful coexistence, to be invented.
These images then show the reality of a city that despite welcomes millions of people from all over Africa, possesses a solitary and silent soul, wary and varied, with its streets which, at the end of the day, are depopulated and are left to themselves; images telling about the true soul of the city, each day reclaimed and made anew in hopes and dreams, too many times disillusioned; images telling about the city of the blacks (80% of the total population), far from that one represented by upscale neighbourhoods for whites, surrounded by walls. (Enrico Doria)