Titled: We Love Mandela: Art Inspired by Madiba opens in Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton ahead of London launch
Madiba’s impact on us as a nation is immense. He has shaped how we think; how we see ourselves. An exciting exhibition, We Love Mandela: Art Inspired by Madiba – will be launched in Sandton, at the Peacemakers Museum, Nelson Mandela Square on Mandela Day – Thursday July 18. Twenty artists will showcase 70 pieces, which range from the gritty and dark; to the elegiac, witty, fun and playful. It is an exhibition, which is a tribute to the man and one that also provides provocative insights into the Madiba years. The exhibition will tour to London in October.
The exhibition will be showcased in two venues at Nelson Mandela Square: The Peacemakers Museum(shop L32) and at fine art auctioneers Stephan Welz & Co.’s gallery (shop L39). Curator and organizer Natalie Knight says that the exhibition was postponed on numerous occasions because of Madiba’s precarious health and out of respect for the Mandela family. However, with the blessing of the Mandela Foundation and other parties, it was decided to launch it on Mandela Day. Alan Demby, who is the proprietor of Stephan Welz & Co., The South African Gold Coin Exchange and the Scoin Shop coin chain, has supported and sponsored the project, including the full use of the two venues, which fall within his business ventures.
There is no entry charge and the artworks are not for sale. This tribute to Mandela will be shown to South Africans prior to the departure of the exhibition. The exhibition will showcase a significant collection of art including paintings, sculpture, photography, cartoons, beadwork, prints and gold medallions from a variety of artists, and is destined to be showcased in other world capitals following its London launch this October.
We Love Mandela: Art inspired by Madiba is the culmination of numerous art exhibitions held previously during Mandela’s 90th and most recently his 94th birthday and will feature work by artists including: Wayne Barker, Richard Chauke, David Koloane, Jurgen Schadeburg, Kagisa Pat Mautloa, Billy and Jane Makhubele, Johannes Maswanganyi, Collen Maswanganyi, Rankadi Daniel Mosako, Velaphi Mzimba, Roy Ndinisa, Len Sak, Joachim Schonfeldt, Eric Sher, Alfred Thoba, Lena Woolf, Susan Woolf and Zapiro.
According to exhibition curator Natalie Knight, some of these artists were severely disadvantaged during the Apartheid era and were only able to find fulfillment of their talent after the release of Mandela and the birth of a democratic South Africa 1994. Others actively used resistance art in the fight against Apartheid.
“Mandela’s influence has had a lasting effect on South Africa and the world. His life and deeds have inspired the artists and they are unanimous in their love and praise for the iconic personality,” says Knight.
This is the third Mandela exhibition curated by Knight, the first being Mandela@90 for the South African Constitutional Court. Mandela visited the exhibition and expressed his delight at the artworks by inviting some of the artists to visit him in his office. The second show Mandela@ 94-z-a, at Origins gallery, Wits was opened by Mandela’s lifelong friend and legal counsel advocate George Bizos, who shared his memoirs of Mandela when they studied together at Wits University South Africa.
The exhibition coincides with South Africa’s celebration of 20 years of democracy and London has been earmarked for the international launch in October, following the City’s longstanding contribution to the fight against apartheid, which included concerts at Wembley, numerous rallies held on Trafalgar Square and an active fight from a number of key British political figures.
The launch of the We Love Mandela: Art inspired by Madiba exhibition has been made possible by Alan Demby, Chairman of Johannesburg-based auction house Stephan Welz & Co. and Natalie Knight, formerly owner of the Natalie Knight Gallery.
The We Love Mandela: Art Inspired by Madiba exhibition will be showcased at the Peacemakers Museum (Shop L32) and Stephan Welz & Co. Sandton Gallery (Shop L39) – Nelson Mandela Square, Sandton – daily from Thursday 18 July until Monday 26 August.
Entry is free to the public and viewing times are as follows:
Peacemakers Museum: Weekdays from 11h00-19h00; weekends from 10h00-18h00
Stephan Welz & Co. Gallery: Daily from 9h00-18h00
For more information, email email@example.com or contact the Peacemakers Musuem on 079 545 2703.