History of Art


Research Seminar - 'William Kentridge, Henry Moore and the Subject of Mining'

09 March 2023, 6:00 pm–8:00 pm

City Deep William Kentridge

This event is free.

Event Information

Open to







Helena Vowles-Shorrock


G11 IAS Common Ground
South Wing
Gower Street, London

William Kentridge’s most recent film, City Deep (2020), which he completed during Covid-enforced lockdown, is his first in his ongoing series of Drawings for Projection since 2011. The work is a 9-minute animation, depicting the work of so-called ‘zama zama’, or ‘try your luck’ informal miners, working in the ruins of abandoned mines, on the outskirts of Johannesburg. Kentridge’s treatment of the subject of mining in Africa differs markedly from that offered by other contemporary artists, such as Steve McQueen, in works including Western Deep, of 2002, or Gravesend of 2007, and also differs from his own earlier treatment of the subject, for example in Mine (1991). What are we to make of these differences, both from contemporary practice and within his own work over the past thirty years? And what does his distinctive way of portraying the figures of these miners tell us, both about what he is representing and the nature of the work that is required to represent it? 

About the Speaker

Dr Tamara Trodd

Senior Lecturer, History of Art at University of Edinburgh

Dr Tamara Trodd teaches the history of modern and contemporary art at the University of Edinburgh. She is the author of The Art of Mechanical Reproduction: Technology and Aesthetics from Duchamp to the Digital (Chicago, 2015), and is currently working on a book about contemporary projected-image art in relation to art and writing of the 1930s and ‘40s.

More about Dr Tamara Trodd