Madiba’s many stat­ues

Five years since his pass­ing, he lives on

Daily News - - METRO - MPILETSO MOTUMI [email protected] | THOMAS MUKOYA

WHEN it comes to stat­ues, no other icon stands taller than the late Strug­gle hero Nel­son Man­dela.

It has been five years since his death and his Madiba Magic con­tin­ues to live on through the many dif­fer­ent sculp­tures made in his name.

Some of the most pop­u­lar stat­ues in­clude the bronze Nel­son Man­dela Square statue in Sand­ton. It was com­mis­sioned in 2002 and com­pleted two years later. Sculpted by Kobus Hat­tingh and Ja­cob Maponyane, the ef­figy was erected in con­junc­tion with the 10th an­niver­sary of South Africa’s first demo­cratic elec­tions. The statue stands 6m high and mea­sures 2.3m from el­bow to el­bow, weigh­ing 2.5 tons (2 500kg).

Most re­cently, in Septem­ber, a life­size sculp­ture of the former pres­i­dent was un­veiled by Pres­i­dent Cyril Ramaphosa at the UN in New York.

Makaziwe Man­dela, who was there to rep­re­sent the fam­ily, said the statue was not only a tes­ti­mony to Madiba but to what South Africa was ca­pa­ble of pro­duc­ing.

The bust of Man­dela with his out­stretched arms will be lo­cated in the UN vis­i­tors’ cen­tre as a per­ma­nent re­minder of South Africa’s lib­er­a­tion icon.

UN sec­re­tary-gen­eral An­to­nio Guter­res re­ferred to Man­dela as one of hu­man­ity’s great lead­ers, hail­ing REUTERS African News Agency (ANA)

him as an out­stand­ing man and a global cit­i­zen.

Street names, school names, restau­rants, a hospi­tal, a foun­da­tion and many other struc­tures of value have been named after the icon.

In Jo­han­nes­burg, the pop­u­lar “Shadow Box­ing” Man­dela statue can be seen op­po­site the lo­cal mag­is­trate’s court.

Un­veiled at the time that Man­dela

was in hospi­tal in 2013, the painted steel sculp­ture is a 6m de­pic­tion, in­spired by a fa­mous pho­to­graph by Drum pho­tog­ra­pher Bob Gosani, of Man­dela as a young am­a­teur boxer.

The mon­u­ment is mul­ti­faceted, made up of lay­ers of painted me­tal sheets mak­ing it two and three di­men­sional. Marco Cian­fanelli, the artist be­hind the work, de­scribed the po­si­tion­ing of the statue as a rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the le­gal sys­tem.

Else­where in the coun­try stands an­other Cian­fanelli Man­dela sculp­ture. In How­ick, KwaZulu-Na­tal, former pres­i­dent Ja­cob Zuma un­veiled the Man­dela Cap­ture Mon­u­ment for the 50th an­niver­sary of Man­dela’s cap­ture by po­lice in 1962.

The sculp­ture com­prises 50 me­tal columns rang­ing in height from 5m to 10m. Vis­i­tors can only see the por­trait of Man­dela at a point 35m away from the front of the sculp­ture.

Naval Hill in Bloem­fontein is also home to a sculp­ture of Madiba. In 2012, 94 white doves were re­leased into the air to sig­nify the life of the icon.

The 8m statue of Man­dela, which has a clenched fist in the air, faces the Waai­hoek Methodist Church, where the ANC was founded 100 years ago. The statue is on the top of Naval Hill.

The un­veil­ing of the bronze Man­dela statue at the Union Build­ings grounds in Pre­to­ria, pic­tured, on the Day of Rec­on­cil­i­a­tion in 2013, marked the end of the 10-day mourn­ing pe­riod of his death. The statue is be­lieved to be the largest statue of all, weigh­ing 4 tons and cost­ing R8 mil­lion to make. On the day of the re­veal, 21 can­nons were fired and three he­li­copters flew the South African flag above the statue.

Other stat­ues in­clude the bronze statue by Jean Doyle at the Drak­en­stein Cor­rec­tional Cen­tre, the mu­ral at the iconic Or­lando Tow­ers in Soweto, the statue in Lon­don’s Par­lia­ment Square and the stained glass win­dow at Regina Mundi Church in Soweto.

A 9m bronze statue of Nel­son Man­dela is at the Union Build­ings in Pre­to­ria.

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