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									                                Art For Humanity
                                                                                                     August 2008

  Art and Upheaval: Artists on Worlds Frontlines            EThekwini Deputy Mayor Loggie Naidoo presents the award to
              by William Cleveland
                                                                    Nantes Mayor Honorable Jean-Marc Ayrault
AFH Featured on Art and Upheaval                             Human Rights Award presented to Nantes

                                           Mzuvele High School staff and learners
                        with artist Dina Comick, AFH chairman Jan Jordaan and Fern Girdlestone,
                            Banners enforce human rights awareness

Editor’s Note

Dear Readers,

I wish to dedicate this issue of our news letter to the late Gabi Nkosi whose life has been a beacon of light
for all who embrace the principles of humanity. May her spirit live forever.

It is hard to believe that we are now only four months away from the end of 2008. It is almost as if time is
on fast forward mode and we must try to hang on or get left behind. On this note it gives me great
pleasure to report that AFH have been expanding our art for human rights advocacy activities, in spite of
the ominous economic outlook affecting NGO’s and charities negatively globally.

In this regard support for AFH will be greatly appreciated; portfolios of the various collections are still
available for a minimum donation. Please contact AFH for further information.

Read in this issue of our news letter about AFH’s recent activity and follow up story on our current project,
‘Dialogue Amongst Civilizations’.

Themba Shibase
August 2008

General News
    •   A Banquet for Human Rights
    •   AFH featured on Art and Upheaval
    •   Human Rights Award presented to Nantes

A Banquet for Human Rights
The 17th of May 2008 saw the coming a 150 people representing most nationalities assembling together
to commemorate human rights, freedom of expression and celebrate the 60th anniversary of the Universal
Declaration of Human rights which was signed and declared on 10 December 1948.

The event was an initiative by Art for Humanity in partnership with the Durban University of Technology
and eThekwini Municipality in an effort to highlight the importance of human rights.

                                  Set up for the Dinner at the Durban Art Gallery

The evening was also aimed at celebrating 20 years of human rights advocacy through art and human
rights development in Durban and the values of art, creativity, freedom of expression, the pursuit of
excellence all which are integral to AFH’s projects.

eThekwini Deputy Mayor, Logie Naidoo stated in his address ‘that we need not be deceived into thinking
that things will just be hunky dory, we need to use music, poetry, art and stage plays in an effort to create
and maintain our human rights culture’.

“Freedom alone does not translate into a human rights culture which will form our heritage. The human
rights culture has to be nurtured and well looked after if we are serious about building a nation that
respects human rights”.

AFH featured in ‘Art and Upheaval’

“We need to break the silence, banish stigma and discrimination and ensure total inclusiveness within the
struggle against AIDS. We have to rise above our differences and combine our efforts to save our
people.” – An extract of Nelson Mandela’s speech at the 13th International AIDS Conference in Durban in
July 2000.

The book Art and Upheaval-Artists on the Worlds Frontlines, published by New Village Press, documents
the adversity and upheaval artists face within their communities through the expression of their art.

Cleveland is a recognized as a pioneer in the community arts
movement and as one of its most poetic documenters. Activist,
teacher, lecturer and musician, Cleveland also directs The
Centre for the study of Art and Community.

In his book, Cleveland takes a closer look at the Art of Human
Rights in South Africa, including the history of Art for Humanity
from its early days as Artists for Human Rights. Also included
is the history of apartheid which dealt with censorship of
artwork, which consequently produced a breed of artists that
were involved in Human Rights issues.

In Chapter 10, Cleveland documents the work of Art for
Humanity (AFH) as an organisation that is involved in local
communities through art. Cleveland notes that Art for Humanity
is recognized for producing large scale artwork for mass
communication as well advocating Human Rights agenda.                 Gabisile Nkosi’s Break the Silence Billboard
                                                                       featured on Page 161, Art and Upheaval

Jan Jordaan, chairman of AFH reiterates this in the book, stating that “Art continues to share the values of
creativity, freedom of expression, excellence, individuality, dignity, pride, reflection etc across humanity
and future generations.”

Cleveland has acknowledged art as a tool of education as it speaks directly to the people. With the launch
of AFH’s Break the Silence Campaign, artists addressed the stigma that was attached to the AIDS

“The Governments foot-dragging and obfuscation in response to the crisis was unconscionable. On the
street, panic and fear had become a secondary symptom of the disease.” stated the author.

Similarly, art is also viewed as a mechanism of self-healing through the artist’s expression. Dr. Sabine
Marshal, who is a contributor to the book, stated that artists are inspired by their personal experiences of

living in, or interfacing with communities in which dying from AIDS has become a daily reality. However,
these adverse conditions become muses for the artists captivating work.

“Even the most negative and deterrent image usually contain a small message of hope and deliverance.
Many artists see their salvation in education.” Dr. Marshall stated.

Human Rights Award presented to Nantes
Art for Humanity was invited to attend the 3rd World Forum on Human Rights which took place on 30 June
– 3 July 2008 at the Nantes Convention Centre in which the ‘Universal Declaration of Human Rights -
International Print Portfolio’ was exhibited. The exhibition was one of the few on exhibit that truly
celebrated humanity’s cultural diversity.

The event was organized by the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization
(UNESCO) in an effort to provide an opportunity to take record of what has been achieved since the
solemn affirmation of a “common standard of achievement for all peoples and all nations.”

In December 2007 AFH formed a partnership with Shackles of Memory focusing on slavery, which was
also part of the discussion during the forum. The partnership saw an exhibition titled ‘Shackles of
Memory’ which was a joint endeavor between AFH, Nantes and eThekwini municipality including Durban
and Cape Town.

On the third day of the forum AFH had the opportunity to present its First international Human Rights
Award; that was presented to the Mayor of Nantes Honorable Jean-Marc Ayrault by Durban, Deputy
Mayor Logie Naidoo. The award was given to the city of Nantes in recognition of the role it played in
establishing the Human Rights Forum.

                                          At the time of the award presentation it was announced that Colombian -
                                          French politician, former senator and anti-corruption activist, Ingrid
                                          Betancourt had been released by the Revolutionary Armed forces of
                                          Colombia (FARC).

                                          Betancourt had spent six years kept hostage by the group after the group
                                          had abducted her on 23 February 2002

                                          AFH Chairman explained that an award of this nature is going to be
                                          presented every second year in an effort to acknowledge the outstanding
                                          work done by an individual or organization to elevate awareness in human

                                          “The award will be presented by AFH, in recognition of the significant
                                          promotion of the principles and values of human rights to the peoples of
                                          the world to an organization or individual that excelled in this regard”, said

                                          Being the first recipients of the award the City of Nantes has created
    Kourosh Salehi "Untitled" (Iran)      credible bench mark for future recipients and by establishing the Human
 Article 16: Right to Marriage & Family   Rights Forum and with the focus on local government
     594 x 420mm lithogragh 607 x
           428mm paper size

This focus is going to permit a greater and more effective transition of human rights to the citizens of the
participating local governments in the forum. This event also highlights the importance of even greater
participation in the forum by a growing number of local governments in future.

                      Image taken during the announcement of Ingrid Betancourt’s release

The award, “Universal Declaration of Human Rights – International Print Portfolio”, consist of a collection
of artworks created by the artists from the participating countries and endorsed by the various signatories
to the collection as reflected in the award certificate and the accompanying publications.
By associating the collection with Human Rights Forum AFH hopes, the forum and the values advocated
by it will eventually become part of the cultural heritage of the world.

Dialogue News
    •   The World in Dialogue

The World in Dialogue

In a world where wars continue to invade our homes and neighboring countries, refugees and asylum
seekers are people we are always going to have around us. There exists a need for us all to be able to
live in harmony without xenophobic attacks on refugees, in an effort to address issues in relation to this
Art for Humanity initiated ‘Dialogue among Civilizations’.

The project involving the collaboration between artists and poets from Africa and countries that
participated in the 2006 Soccer World Cup aim to inspire the viewer with moral ownership of the values
associated with art and poetry and to internalize the messages embedded in the collection.

The project presently enjoys the participation of artists such as Amira Wasfy from Egypt, Churchill
Madikida and Kim Berman from SA, Melvin Edwards and poet Jayne Cortez from the US as well as
William Kelly from Australia. As the deadline of Oct. 2009 is slowly coming closer enlisting the
participation from the Africa continent and elsewhere is now becoming more urgent. The launch of the
exhibition is set for 21st March 2010, South Africa’s Human Rights Day and an exciting conference is
being planned with the focus on ‘Art, Freedom of Expression, Human Rights and Peace’.

Australia and ‘Dialogue’

It is noteworthy to mention the support that ‘Dialogue’ has been receiving from the Australian High
Commission in Pretoria through the continues efforts of Mr. William Blomfield, Third Secretary. The
project has been widely publicized in Australia and numerous enquiries regarding potential participation
has been received from writers, artists and poets.

This support has prompted AFH to add a special section to the publication/catalogue which will feature
the contributions of all of those that might not directly contribute to the portfolio and the exhibitions
program. In this instance AFH wish to express our sincere gratitude to the Australian High Commission
and in particular to Mr. Blomfield.

It is hoped that the other foreign missions in South Africa would follow suit and in partnership with their
colleagues in the Australian High Commission would contribute to the success of the project and ensure a
worthwhile contribution to the future cultural heritage of all.
AFH’s projects feature an endorsement campaign which represents an important aspect of our projects
as it combines the creative and associated inspirational nature of art with the insight and wisdom of the
representatives from the world of human rights advocacy. By endorsing our various initiatives, those
individuals and organizations recognize our work as being relevant to their own ideals and objectives.

The Dialogue project has also been endorsed nationally and internationally by high profiled individuals
and organizations such as Prof Neil Mitchell, Chair at the University of Aberdeen, Prof Roy du Pré, Vice
Chancellor, DUT, Richard Demarco, Artist, Iratxe Momoitio, Director of Guernica Peace Museum, Judge
Edwin Cameron, Supreme Court of Appeal, Justice Albie Sachs, Constitutional Court, Breyten
Breytenbach Director of the Goree Institute, William Kelly, Artist, Visual Arts Network of South Africa
(VANSA), Ms Nomabelu Mvambo-Dandala, Executive Director of Diakonia Council of Churches, Sherylle
Delene Dass, Lawyers for Human Rights Refugee and Migrant Rights Project.

Art for Humanity welcomes calls from individuals and organizations who would like to host the Dialogue
among Civilisations collection of art and poetry in the year 2010 and beyond.

Present ‘Dialogue’ Participants

                                  Mel Edwards, Sculptor
                                  New York, USA

                                  Mel Edwards is renowned for creating sculpture that fuses the political with the
                                  abstract that addresses his African American heritage.

                                  His works, characterized by the use of straight-edged triangular and rectilinear
                                  forms, often have provocative content.
                                  Edwards is considered one of America's foremost contemporary sculptors. Based
                                  in New York City, he has had more than a dozen one-person show exhibits and
                                  been in over four dozen group shows.

                            Jayne Cortez, Poet and performance artist
                            New York, USA

                            Jayne Cortez is the author of ten books of poems and performer of her poetry with music
                            on nine recordings. Her voice is said to be celebrated for its political, surrealistic, dynamic
                            innovations in lyricism, and visceral sound.

                            Cortez has performed, lectured, and taught at universities, museums, and festivals. She is
                            the recipient of fellowships from the National Endowment for the Arts and the New York
                            Foundation for the Arts, the International African Festival Award, and the American Book

                         Churchill Madikida, Artist
                         South Africa

                         Churchill Madikida’s work is known for the way it confronts socio-cultural issues and is
                         largely autobiographical as it deals with his Xhosa and South African heritage as a form
                         of self-imagery. It is also directed at its viewers, exposing them to the rituals and
                         ceremonies that help construct personal identity
                         Churchill is the recipient of the 2006 Standard Bank Young Artist of the Year for visual

                            William Kelley, Artist

                            William Kelly is an artist, humanist and human-rights advocate.
                            For his role as an international artist, humanist, human rights advocate, and
                            founder of the Archive of Humanist Art, Kelly received the Courage of Conscience
                            Award from The Peace Abbey in Sherborn, Massachusetts

Women for Children News
    •   Banners in schools enforce human rights awareness
    •   Oliewenhuis W4C exhibition
    •   ‘look at me’ travels to Bremen

Banners enforce human rights awareness in partnership with the South African
Development Fund

Art for Humanity recently made a visit to some of the schools that have received two banners mounted on
their walls; the schools were selected to participate in project initiated by AFH and funded by the South
African Development Fund (SADF) of taking art and poetry to schools.

The school banner programme was launched by AFH in an effort to raise awareness on human rights and
educate learners about violence against women and children using art and poetry from the ‘Women for
Children’ project.

One of the schools which received two banners was Mzuvele High School, a previously disadvantaged
school based in KwaMashu, the school received banners featuring an artwork by artist Dina Comick titled
‘How often do we bend down to help the children’ and a poem by Mari Pete and another one featuring an
artwork by Kim Berman titled ‘Mothers grief’ and a poem by Mmtshilo Motsei, titled ‘A Woman's Heart of

The banners were received with excitement by the school
community at large Snenhlanhla Gumede a learner from the
school was impressed with the message they carried by the
banners and thought they are set to make a positive impact on
learners as well as the teachers.

“I read the poems and they give out a good message and they talk
about things that are going on around us. I like how Mmatshilo
Motsei’s poem titled ‘A Woman’s Heart of Steel’: portrays women
as heroines”, said Snenhlanhla.

Grade 11 student, Zandile Ngwane believed that there is a place
in society for this artwork to advocate Human Rights issues in
local communities. “As you know the youth has lost their track, so                 Mzuvele High School staff and learners
this art will help them to find their way back”, she added               with artist Dina Comick, AFH chairman Jan Jordaan and
                                                                                             Fern Girdlestone

Siyanda Msomi an art teacher at Mzuvele High said that art is starting to be further recognised in the
school and that pupils are showing more interest by asking questions and requesting to visit galleries.
“The nicest thing is that the banners were brought to the kids, to the school other than the kids going to
the gallery for the work,” stated Msomi.

‘Women for Children’ artist, Dina Cormick took the opportunity to interact with the learners and teachers
and to get feedback from them on the work that had been presented to them.
“The artwork is open up to everyone’s own interpretation. I want to create dialogue, to make people start
thinking so that they can start acting”, Cormick said regarding her art work.

AFH will continue to visit other schools as the project is still in the growing process, it since owns the rich
participation of four including Bechet High School, Durban Girls High School, Addington Primary School
and Assegai Primary School.

Depending on support AFH intends rolling out the banners to as many schools in future as possible. An
exciting new development is the participation of schools in the Leeds area; UK in this program kindly
facilitated by the head of Leeds International affairs, Ms. Karen Murgatroyd and includes the following
schools. Some of the schools participating from Leeds are Prince Henry’s High School and Garforth
Community College.

Women and Children’s rights highlighted in Bloemfontein

The plight of women and children all over the world is universal. In a world where women and children are
abused, beaten up and even killed by those closest to them, the need for a project such as ‘Women for
Children’ arises to help address such issues.

                                                          The ‘Women for Children’ project has been displayed in an
                                                          exhibition at the Oliewenhuis Museum that was opened by
                                                          Mrs Elisabe Esterhuizen, Director of Child Welfare
                                                          Bloemfontein and Childline Free State on 15 April 2008.

                                                          When opening the exhibition Esterhuizen commended the
                                                          participants who created the works featured in the project for
                                                          taking their time in studying the effects abuse has on

                                                          “The participants in this project really went to a lot of trouble
                                                          to study the circumstances of children and then to give
                                                          expression of these through the particular art forms. Striving
 ‘Women for Children’ exhibition at the Oliewenhuis Art   to advocate children’s rights through art and poetry has to be
               Museum, Bloemfontein                       highlighted”, said Esterhuizen.

All the remarkable works of 50 artists and poets who speak out in one voice against abuse using art and
poetry, engaging about how women and children can benefit from any initiative that can be taken by
partners and fathers in appreciating women and protecting children.

                         ‘Women for Children’ installation at the Oliewenhuis Art Museum

Esterhuizen quoted one the endorsers Marianne Fassler of the project as having stated “This campaign is
a work of passion beyond remuneration, of compassion beyond the call of duty, of commitment to art
rarely found in corporate institutions”.

                             ‘Women for Children’ project endorser Marianne Fassler

The exhibition enjoyed the viewership of more than 150 people from the time it opened; those who
attended it called it an amazing gift of information and an inspiring effort while some hoped to see more
work of this nature displayed in times to come.

“What an amazing gift of information, knowledge & passion. Thank you for sharing it with us so that we
can appreciate it more every time we open a book or handle a page. It will be treasured….” said Marelize
van der Merwe. The exhibition closed on 11 May 2008.

‘Look at me’ travels to Bremen, Germany

The ‘Women for Children’ portfolio featuring the art and poetry of 50 women poets and artists will be
traveling to Bremen, Germany where it will be showcased at the Villa Inchon, in an exhibition
commencing on 4 September 2008 as a result of the twinning of the city of Bremen and the eThekwini

The initiative behind the exhibition is to form partnerships between Art for Humanity (AFH), the Durban
University of Technology (DUT) with the Art Academy of Bremen. Jan Jordaan, AFH chairman, alongside
Nise Malange, director of the BAT Centre also anticipates collaboration with community art centers in
Bremen. As part of the exhibition the extracts from the poetry is now also being translated into German.

The programme, which looks at the proposal of ‘women for art’, will be located at the Villa Ichon which is
well-known for promoting women artists as well as the Arts Academy that has a strong affiliation with art
and human rights.

This venture is set to include six artists from local townships in Inanda, Ntuzuma and KwaMashu involved
in a developmental programme known as ‘INK’ under the management of Linda Mbonambi, eThekwini
Municipality. INK artists will work in conjunction with artists from the Arts Academy as well as Bremen
artist Edeltraut Rath in constructing a mural project as part of the concept of twinning the art community of
Durban and Bremen.

The exhibition will include a poetry recital by Nise Malange, a workshop at the University of Bremen
facilitated by Jan Jordaan, who will also be a guest speaker. Guests at the exhibition will also include the
South African Ambassador to the Federal Republic of Germany, H E Mr S E Funde.

Through the ‘Women for Children’ campaign, AFH further endeavors to bring the programme to the
schools in Bremen.

The exhibition is going to on display from 4 September 2008 to 10 October 2008

Break the Silence News
    •   ‘Break the Silence’ exhibition
    •   Diakonia AIDS summit

‘Break the Silence’ exhibition

Art for humanity is pleased to announce that two editions of the Break the Silence print portfolio is still
available for collection and exhibition and can be acquired by a making a minimum donation of R45 000
to AFH.

The portfolio is a collection of 31 prints by artists from South Africa and abroad, the project was launched
in year 2000 as initiative by AFH to create greater awareness and address the stigma regarding

                                                       Break the Silence has been endorsed by various specialists in
                                                       the field of health and culture including Dr. Peter Piot, UNAIDS;
                                                       Dr. Ben Ngubane, previous Minister of Arts Culture Science and
                                                       Technology; Dr. Helen Gayle, previous Director of the Centre for
                                                       Disease Control, Atlanta; Prof. Ben Khoapa, previous Vice
                                                       Chancellor of Natal Technikon, Mrs. Graca Machel, Bishop
                                                       Rubin Phillip, Prof H.M. Coovadia and others.

                                                       The portfolio has over the years been collected by the South
                                                       African Department of Arts and Culture, National Gallery in
                                                       Namibia, Museum of Modern Art, NY, UCLA Fowler Museum in
                                                       Los Angeles, USA and others.

                                                       The portfolio has recently been exhibited at the Diakonia Aids
Artwork by Gabisile Nkosi, title: Break the Silence,   Summit on HIV/AIDS which took place from 2 – 6 June 2008 at
 Linocut 420 x 590mm, ‘Break the Silence’, 2000        Sierra Lodge, Mooi River, KZN, SA.

Other exhibitions include:
Iziko Art Gallery, Cape Town, 1 Dec 2006, DIT Art Gallery, Art for Humanity, Durban, SA from 26 April –
20 May 2005, RAU, Gauteng, SA from 1 September – 22 September 2004, Tatham Art Gallery,
Pitermatizburg, Kwazulu Natal, S.A, June 2004 – 25 August 2004 and DIT Gallery, Artist for Humanity
(AfH) Launch, Durban, SA, 27 April – 14 May 2004.

AFH welcomes individuals and organisations that would like to host an exhibition of the ‘Break the
Silence’ print portfolio or support the billboard campaign. The billboard will feature an artwork AFH logo
as well as the sponsor’s logo. Organisations and individuals can sponsor a billboard for a minimum
donation of R6000 or for the same amount two smaller banners in a school in SA. For more information
please contact AFH on: 27 (031) 373 6610 (tel.) or email us afh@dut.ac.za

AFH exhibits ‘Break the Silence’ at AIDS Summit
The effects of HIV/AIDS still continue to ravage the world at large with more and more people getting
infected with the virus every day, Art for Humanity’s Break the Silence has once again been in exhibition
promote awareness and dialogue on the endemic.

AFH was invited by the Diakonia Council of Churches, AFH partner organisation, to exhibit the ‘Break the
Silence’ portfolio at the Summit on HIV/AIDS that was held at Sierra Lodge in Mooi River.

Some of the images from the portfolio were displayed on the dining room walls, enhancing the overall
environment, also providing stimulating conversation and reflection on the day’s topics during meal-times.

In the conference venue, posters from the collection were also displayed and later donated to the
participants (approximately 110 people) on a ‘first come, first served’ basis. They disappeared fast! Art
for Humanity representative and Manager, Fern Girdlestone was given a few minutes to present the
concept behind the collection to the group which developed interest among the people in attendance
during the summit.

For some of the delegates, the concept of addressing the stigma of AIDS through art was new and they
embraced the idea as an important way to help change the public perceptions. A few people also
expressed their interest in knowing more about AFH and in requesting banners for a particular school or
building in their area.

As a result of a contact with a young American intern at the Manning Road Methodist Church in Durban,
AFH was later able to arrange a 3-afternoons art workshop with refugee children at this church which
proved to be very successful and appreciated by both the Church and the children.

The Diakonia Council of Churches also expressed their appreciation in having the exhibition and plan to
include AFH in their other events in the future.

The Diakonia is a strategic partner working with AFH on the ‘Dialogue among Civilizations project.

Alex Flett, Associate AFH Board member further ensured our presence at the XVII International AIDS
Conference, Mexico City and we hope to report further on this in our next issue.


Lungi Langa: Contributing Writer, Layout and Design, Editor
Megan van den Heever: Contributing Writer
Themba Shibase: Editor
Jan Jordaan: Contributor

Contact Us

Art for Humanity                                      Tel: +27 (31) 373 6610
c/o Fine Art                                          Fax: +27 (31) 373 6611
Durban University of Technology                       Website: www.afh.org.za
City Campus                                           Email: afh@dut.ac.za
Box 953
South Africa
Durban 4000


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