Yesterday, 5-Gum Experience hosted a Halloween party beneath the usually eerily deserted platform of the old Johannesburg Halt Station. The party featured acts by A-Trak and Hudson Mohawke, which, with the interesting party venue, seemed to be very well received by those who went to the event.
What a cool space to celebrate Halloween! With its spidery steel bracing, the haphazardously cracked and broken clerestorey windows, and general dirty deserted state; this piece of architecture alludes back 100 years back to Johannesburg’s, sometimes dark, industrial history.
It is quite fascinating that this entire structure was actually designed and manufactured in the Netherlands (Rotterdam), before it was brought here in 1896.
It is also located at an interesting site that was once part of the Brickfields or ‘Kazerne’ area, which became a pivotal gateway for almost all goods travelling to, from, and through Johannesburg.
In the 50’s the steel canopy was removed and put in Kempton Park, as part of the renovation of the Johannesburg Park Station. It was then moved back to its original site in the 90s. It’s really quite quirky that this structure has such a mobile quality, being able to be moved around far distances, to be erected in new places, but always retaining its integrity. I wonder whether this elegant piece of architecture will be found on this site in 10 years from now…