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REVAMP OF MURAL (article first published : 2001-10-23)

Durban mural Nomkhubulwana is painted in the flyover adjacent to the Berea Station on Market Road. The image of the Big Mama Africa is based on an interpretation of the Zulu traditional folklore of the Rain Queen, Nomkhubulwana, the mother provider, mother protector.

Originally executed by Community Mural Projects Trust, 10 days before the first democratic elections of the new South Africa in 1994. The group of artists particularly chose this subject, considering a female figure would impose an attitude of peace in a male dominated society. During that time in history, KZN was torn apart by the war of political parties. The artists even had to take cover from the firing of bullets during a political rally passing through the railway station.

Over the years, the mural has become an icon. It regularly appears in photographs to promote Durban and her energies.

Seven years later Nomkhubulwana is about to have a new look and face lift. The revamp and restoration will take place from October 25 to 31 and is being done in conjunction with the Warwick Junction Project Office, under the administration of Richard Dobson, architect in chief and architect Barbara van Zyl.

The Department of Arts, Culture, Science and Technology (DACTS) is funding the initiative, from its Poverty Relief allocations. Community Mural Projects has been granted the opportunity to repaint it using five students from BAT and five of the original artists.

More details from Terry-anne Stevenson on 083 654-4552 or e-mail: terryanne@mweb.co.za




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