In the past, Ayanda Mabulu’s paintings of Jacob Zuma, the Guptas, and various politicians have caused a sensation. However, his latest work has been condemned on a number of levels…
The work depicts former president, Nelson Mandela smiling in front of the Nazi flag. In the painting, Mandela’s hand is raised in a Nazi salute, and the image is captioned “Unmasked Piece of Sh*t.”
It was displayed at the Joburg Art Fair which began on 7 September, but was removed after being deemed ‘too offensive’.
Along with the public outcry, the Nelson Mandela Foundation has said that it would be considering taking action against the artist.
The Foundation released the statement below:
“Over many decades and across territories and jurisdictions, artists have depicted, represented and referenced Nelson Mandela in their work. The Nelson Mandela Foundation has no expertise in the arts and accepts that freedom of expression gives artists a creative licence which at times will result in work which is more or less disturbing.
“But there are limits.
“The work by Ayanda Mabulu which briefly was put on public display without due authorisation at the Jo’burg Art Fair today in our view goes beyond reasonable limit. We find it deeply offensive.
“We commend the Jo’burg Art Fair management for their quick action in difficult circumstances.
“Together with our stakeholders, we are considering options in terms of further action. (Last year we chose to seek an order from the Equality Court declaring gratuitous public displays of the old South African national flag to be a form of hate speech. That litigation is ongoing.)
There are limits.”
Ayanda Mabulu’s latest work. Crazy. pic.twitter.com/yWRuqc483J
— Manqeezus (@_Bonga) September 10, 2018