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REVAMP OF MURAL (article first published : 2001-12-16)

Durbanís famous mural Nomkhubulwana was undertaken during October. The massive artwork 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.

Over the years, the mural has become an icon and has been photographed on many occasions to promote Durban and it was originally executed by Community Mural Projects Trust, 10 days before the first democratic elections of the new South Africa in 1994.

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 particularly 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.

The restoration was undertaken 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) funded the initiative from its Poverty Relief allocations. Community Mural Projects were given the opportunity to repaint it using five students from the BAT Centre and five of the original artists.




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