Arts, Culture & Heritage

Miners’ Monument

Last Updated: September 26, 2023
Artist

David Macgregor

A Brief History

The Miners Monument was commissioned by the Transvaal and Orange Free State Chamber of Mines, and presented to the City of Johannesburg in 1964. It was originally intended that the miners would be accompanied by Carl von Brandis sculpture, the first mining commissioner of Johannesburg. It was subsequently decided that von Brandis should have a separate sculpture dedicated to him, and Macgregor was commissioned to produce the Carl von Brandis statue that is situated at the High Court Precinct on Pritchard street. The artwork is part of a group of older and more traditional public artworks that can still be found in the inner city, and which weathered the urban decay that beset the inner city during the 1980s and 90s. One of the feet of the miners that form part of the Miners Monument group was in fact sawn off in 2001 by thieves seeking to harvest scrap metal. A new boot was cast from a mould of one of the other miners’ boots by artist Sarel van Rensburg, and welded back onto the leg in 2002.

Description

The statue depicts 3 mineworkers typical of 1963. The statue faces west in the region of Langlaagte (the place where the Main Reef was discovered). The statue is 3 metres high and the total base is 6 metres. The statue is cast in bronze and was repainted in 2009.

Artwork Signage

The Miners Monument was commissioned by the Transvaal and Orange Free State Chamber of Mines, and presented to the City of Johannesburg in 1964. It was originally intended that the miners would be accompanied by Carl von Brandis sculpture, the first mining commissioner of Johannesburg. It was subsequently decided that von Brandis should have a separate sculpture dedicated to him, and Macgregor was commissioned to produce the Carl von Brandis statue that is situated at the High Court Precinct on Pritchard street. The artwork is part of a group of older and more traditional public artworks that can still be found in the inner city, and which weathered the urban decay that beset the inner city during the 1980s and 90s. One of the feet of the miners that form part of the Miners Monument group was in fact sawn off in 2001 by thieves seeking to harvest scrap metal. A new boot was cast from a mould of one of the other miners’ boots by artist Sarel van Rensburg, and welded back onto the leg in 2002.

Location & Address

129-132 De Korte St, Wanderers View Estate, Johannesburg, 2017