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Release | Marco Cianfanelli | 2012 Release | Marco Cianfanelli | 2012 Release | Marco Cianfanelli | 2012

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On 04, Jan 2014 | In | By admin

Release | Marco Cianfanelli | 2012

August 2012

AMAFA / Heritage KwaZulu Natal, the uMngeni Municipality and The Department of Co-operative Governance and Traditional Affairs commissioned a large scale sculpture by Marco Cianfanelli and Culture Mechanics to commemorate the 50 year anniversary of the arrest of Nelson Mandela which happened at the site on the 5th of August 1962.

Brendan Copestake project managed the sculpture fabrication, installation as well as the building works.


The sculpture comprises of 50 mild steel columns, between 6m and 10m high, that are placed onto a concrete base. From a standing position of 35m from the sculpture, the columns come into focus and the image of Nelson Mandela can be seen.

The sculpture was unveiled by President Jacob Zuma on the 6th of August 2012.

Cianfanelli says of his work ‘this represents the momentum gained in the struggle through the symbolic of Mandela’s capture. The 50 columns represent the 50 years since his capture, but they also suggest the idea of many making the whole; of solidarity. It points to an irony as the political act of Mandela’s incarceration cemented his status as an icon of struggle, which helped ferment the groundswell of resistance, solidarity and uprising, bringing about political change and democracy.’



3D Grahical Rendering of Sculpture


The video above shows a 3D rendering of the 50 poles moving in and out of focus to reveal the face of Nelson Mandela.



Take the N3 highway to Durban / Johannesburg. Outside of Howick, take the Howick Midmar Dam turnoff and follow the R103 to Lions River.

The sculpture is 5 min from the N3 turnoff and is well signposted.

View Larger Map

Sculpture Details

Marco Cianfanelli
Painted laser-cut mild steel & steel tube construction, painted black
Width: 5.19 meters
Height: 9.48 meters
Length: 20.8 meters


 Release Press Statement


Project Team
  • Project and Site Development | Christopher Till, Director of The Apartheid Museum
  • Concept Design (2005) | Marco Cianfanelli and Jeremy Rose
  • Artist | Marco Cianfanelli
  • Architect | Jeremy Rose and Gilbert Balinda – Mashabane Rose Associates
  • Project Concept and Commissioning Agent | Culture Mechanics
  • Project Manager | Brendan Copestake
  • Quantity Surveyor | Kevin Pickup and Yvonne Joubert – Davis Langdon
  • Structural Engineer | John Duncan – CADEXSA
  • Civil Engineer | Geoff Boutell – GDB Engineering
  • Steel Fabricator | Jurie van der Westhuizen – Estee Automation
  • Earthworks Contractor | Jaya Naidoo – GAP Contracting
  • Consulting Fabricator | Stephan Lund – Argoweld
  • Landscaping | Natasha Strong – Justdigit


Installation Photos