The Drakenstein Municipality is paying homage to South African icon President Nelson Mandela with a photographic exhibition in honour of his centenary celebrations. The poignant exhibition of photographs shot by ordinary South Africans was opened in the imposing KWV Cathedral Cellar earlier this week.
According to Councillor Conrad Poole, Executive Mayor of the Drakenstein Municipality, it was a privilege and historic moment to open the exhibition. Poole referred to the bitter-sweet relationship between Drakenstein and the former president as he spent his final years of incarceration in Paarl, but also took his first steps of freedom in this area.
“We are committed to keeping the legacy of Tata Madiba alive through telling the untold stories of ordinary people through this selection of pictures. Through this exhibition we want to foster social cohesion by celebrating our cultural diversity – and of course these pictures are a showcase of our diverse society. We also want to associate Drakenstein with the values and principles of leadership that Madiba represents and to show the world that we will continue to uphold Madiba’s legacy in the hearts and lives of every citizen in Drakenstein,” explained Poole during the official opening.
The exhibition captures snapshots of ordinary citizens interacting with the inimitable President Mandela and brings to life the incredible charisma of this world-renowned and adored statesman. The exhibition will move to the Council Chambers at Drakenstein Municipality’s offices at the Paarl Civic Centre, Berg River Boulevard, Paarl, and plans are underway to eventually publish a coffee table book to celebrate the former president’s relationship with the Drakenstein community.
It was particularly appropriate for the exhibition opening to be staged in the majestic KWV Cathedral Cellar as the globally recognized brand also celebrates its centenary this year. Local chef Mynhardt Joubert continued the tribute to President Mandela by creating a four-course menu of remembrance, inspired by Mandela’s personal cook Xoliswa Ndoyiya and recipes from her cookbook Ukutya Kwasekhaya: Tastes from Nelson Mandela’s Kitchen.
Guests could take a culinary walk down memory lane with some of the president’s favourite home-cooked dishes, which he shared with his family, struggle stalwarts and international celebrities. The menu included pea soup with potbrood, a spicy tomato prawn curry and succulent, rolled lamb slow-baked in Xoli’s special sauce and served with Oprah Winfrey potatoes, a dish requested by the Hollywood star whenever she visited President Mandela. As a sweet finale, guests enjoyed Pollsmoor Fruitcake with vanilla bean crème anglaise and aged KWV brandy. This fruitcake was based on a microwave recipe developed by prison warden Christo Barnard’s wife, which she would send to Mandela and his fellow inmates at Pollsmoor.
For more on the exhibition, visit www.paarlonline.com.