The ‘Born Free’ Brand
Sean Jacobs | February 7th, 2014


The Fader (yes, they’re still around) has been putting up a series of posts from Johannesburg (Obey You Collective: South Africa) that focuses on “artists, trail-blazers, and bright young talents from South Africa.” (The series is paid for by soft drink company Coco Cola.) Much of it seems to be filmed around the part of the city marketed as Maboneng. In the latest instalment, they published an interview with Tarryn Alberts, part of dance crew, V.I.N.T.A.G.E. (If you remember, Zach Rosen interviewed them for AIAC, here; word is Alberts has left V.I.N.T.A.G.E., btw). Anyway, the interview includes this illuminating passage about the Catch 22 for young black people after Apartheid, in which expectations come up against social reality (Alberts leans more to expectation): 

A lot of kids are pushing their own brands, saying, “This is what I stand for.” It’s about being free with who you are, pushing your dreams and chasing goals. A lot of children finish school and they actually feel like, “I can do that thing I’ve always wanted to do.” You have so many kids that are from the ‘born free’ generation, like they weren’t born in apartheid. They have the opportunity to go and study after school, something my parents couldn’t do. They have the opportunity now to earn a living doing promotions, making t-shirts and selling them, doing whatever. I think that’s something that has become big in the last five years — young people doing something for themselves.


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Sean Jacobs

Otherwise known as Hasan Wasan.

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