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Mandela and Mosaics

I received an e-mail last term from Taryn Millar last term with a request to get my art students involved in an activity planned for this year’s Mandela day. Taryn is with the fundraising and project management arm for the redevelopment of the KZN Children’s Hospital and she wanted my art students from Reddam House Umhlanga to get involved in a mosaic project – taking two flat surfaced garden benches, and mosaicing images that relate to the Children’s Hospital onto the benches. This project would be initiated at the Children’s Hospital site on the 18th of July. (What would have been Mandela’s 100 Birthday)

My Grade 11 art students and I arrived at the KZN Children’s Hospital on Wednesday morning at 9am and started working on the tops of the concrete benches.

All sorts of events and activities were taking place at the same time. A few primary schools were involved in painting portraits of Mandela and making handprints in paint, and tertiary students worked on murals around the car park of the Children’s Hospital. With loud music playing, singing and a large birthday cake being cut and distributed, the atmosphere was quite festive.

We worked on the mosaics until 11.30am and then I took my students on a tour of the still derelict parts of the hospital buildings. A lot of the building is in a terrible state of decay. See the pics below. My students loved the atmospheric creepiness of the building and a few have vowed to return for future photo shoots. You can also look at my previous blog post for more pics of this building

We didn’t complete the benches - so we will collect them next week and finish them off at school. The finished  benches will eventually be placed along the pathway of the functioning outpatient department at the hospital.

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