Qaanitah Hunter – Cii News (29-05-12)
The National leadership of the ANC met with representatives of the Goodman
Gallery in Rosebank on Tuesday.
ANC secretary general, Gwede Mantashe led his counterparts to deliver their
memorandum regarding Bret Murrays controversial painting, The Spear.
The portrait, which depicts President Jacob Zuma with his genitals exposed,
created a lot of controversy for the artists, gallery and the City Press
newspaper who published the picture.
The cluster of politicians who accompanied Mantashe included SACP leader,
Blade Nzimande, ANC national spokesperson Jackson Mthembu, Tony Yengeni and other top ANC members.
The leadership was not allowed inside the premises of the Goodman Gallery
and its representatives were surrounded by a heavy police presence.
On their return to the podium it was announced that the Goodman Gallery
accepted the memorandum and that the Goodman Gallery would like to engage
Mantashe announced that the Gallery has officially agreed to remove The
Spear Image of their website.
This was received with many cheers from the crowd.
“Our message to the Goodman Gallery is that we support freedom of expression
and freedom of artistic expression, but we do not support freedom of
insulting our president,” Mantashe said.
There was a lot of laughter and elation emanating from the mobile stage as
the leadership cracked jokes amongst themselves.
It was finally announced that the call to boycott The City Press has been
revoked and that the ANC was happy the image has been removed from the City Press
“What we do not win in the courts we win on the streets, and you won,”