On 26th November 2012, The National Society of Closing Coal Mines ’Valea Jiului’ was established to lead the shutting down of three coal mines that were stated as being unreliable: S.M. Paroşeni, S.M. Petrila and S.M. Uricani.
Having the closing deadline in 2018, these three coal mines will send around 2400 employers towards retirement or make them find a new job. Of course, considering the events that took place in the ’90s, the so called ’mineriads’, the miners’ condition became irelevant to the Romanian society and their image categorically unfavourable. Therefore, the stereotypes impregnated the popular beliefs and the miners are seen now as an avoidable group, under the same preconceived ideas, being often dehumanized.
In a mix of portraits, industrial landscapes and sequences captured at the entrance and at the exit of the mines, the Last Shift project is intended to be a refreshing of the miners’ image, but also a documentation of the last months of mining activity and of the last miners who are going in the underground of the Paroşeni, Petrila and Uricani coal mines.