The inspirational life of Nelson Mandela forms the basis for an extraordinary art col-lection that show cases the story of a deeply-beloved South African icon. On the 3rd of May 2017, The Lookout events and function venue in Cape Town was privileged to present a single private viewing of this collection, namely John Meyer’s “Mandela: A Life’s Journey”. The exhibition was hosted by Andrew and Jeanne Dunn in support of the Nelson Mandela Foundation, and allowed guests to enjoy the powerful and thought-provoking artworks before the collection embarked on an international tour that includes some of the artistic capitals of the world.
The series is on loan from a private collection owned by Andrew Dunn, CEO of Richmark Holdings, and each of the 16 pieces are works of acrylic on canvas. Dunn commissioned the series from renowned South African artist John Meyer, whom he considers to be one of South Africa’s greatest living artists. The series took three years to complete and the result was a heart-warming and descriptive look at Madi-ba’s life. The private viewing resulted from the recognised need to show off the magnificent art pieces to South Africans before the world tour begins. According to Dunn, “John is a living legend who has painted for the Queen of England, Paul Allen of Microsoft and many more world and business leaders. Thus, choosing him to help fulfil my dream of owning a collection based on the life of Nelson Mandela was an easy decision.”
For Meyer, Nelson Mandela’s rare and universal influence challenged him to raise his game and reach new levels artistically. Meyer explains of his work, “I want to ex-plore the private world of people’s lives, the enigmatic unexplained and hidden emo-tions.” Having met Mandela on several occasions, Meyer has always been struck by his saintliness and the fact that he has served as a rallying point for all the world’s dispossessed. He did, however, try to avoid politics in the series, aiming rather to capture Mandela’s humanity.
It is also intended that photographs of the artworks will be published in book format as well as separate prints, with the proceeds going to The Nelson Mandela Founda-tion to support its valuable work.