Remembering Madiba’s shirt.

Remembering Madiba’s shirt.

It is common for people to hold onto items of clothing of loved ones who have passed. In Port Elizabeth, art students at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University have taken this a step further by creating and erecting their own version of that special piece of clothing that will be a permanent reminder of our beloved Nelson Mandela. Their sculpture is called “The Madiba Shirt” and is comfortably perched in the Beyers Naudé Garden of Contemplation at the university. The sculpture is intended to be a constant and inspirational reminder of the values of NMMU and Madiba. The Madiba Shirt is the first phase of a public art project at Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University. The metal frame of the Madiba Shirt has an intricate wirework that suspends individually made ceramic tiles. Letters on the the tiles spell words: ubuntu, unity, diversity, integrity, excellence. Shirt dimensions:- 3m height, 2.2m width and 1.4m depth.

A large shirt for a large man.

The sculpture was conceived by artists Mary Duker and Bianca Whitehead of the Art department of Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University with the support from NMMU Arts and Culture.  Jonathan van der Walt managed the design, production and installation of the aluminium wire element of the project. The frame was constructed by Roland Luders and his team at R & R Aesthetics, Bianca Whitehead and the ceramic students made and installed the ceramics, The Wire Team consisted of Amos Ragophala, Michelle D’Urbano, Isso Jafta, Sarel Venter and Jonathan van der Walt.  The sculpture was unveiled in October 2015.      Info taken from:-

The Madiba Shirt Story:-

The Madiba Shirt was a creation for Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela, who served as President of South Africa from 1994 to 1999, the first to be elected in a fully representative democratic election. In 1994, the designer Desre Buirski gave a gift of a hand-printed batik shirt to Nelson Mandela’s body guard, with a note saying “Thank you for everything you have done and the sacrifices you have made for our beloved country”. Mr. Mandela wore the shirt the next day to the dress rehearsal for the opening of Parliament and was photographed on the front page of a local newspaper. Desre Buirski subsequently designed many printed, embroidered and over 150 hand-painted silk shirts for South Africa’s beloved Madiba, which he wore on the world stage, becoming a global style as well as political icon. The style of ‘The Madiba Shirt’ evolved as Mr. Mandela requested various shirts throughout his time as President.

Taken from:

a close up of the ceramic tiles

A close up of the ceramic tiles

The base of the madiba shirt sculpture

The base of The Madiba Shirt sculpture

Madiba Shirt at nmmu

Madiba Shirt at NMMU

back view of madiba shirt sculpture

Back view of Madiba Shirt sculpture

the madiba shirt sculpture aptly expresses the stature of mandela

The Madiba Shirt sculpture aptly expresses the stature of Mandela





Jonathan van der Walt and team

Jonathan van der Walt and team

The Cupboard has moved.

The Cupboard has moved.

“Cupboard Love” has moved again. A trendy gift, decor and clothing boutique, supporting local art and innovative designers, now trading from:-

21 Bain Street

Port Elizabeth

South Africa

Contact Carryn:                           E-mail:                            Cell: 076 626 5815    Facebook:

Cupboard Love Night Shopping          30th April at 16:00

New ceramics from: Token Ceramics

See Dempsey’s old blog post on Cupboard Love:   Old blog post yet same cheerful service and interesting wares to be found at Cupboard Love.


cupboard love 15 raleigh street

Cupboard Love, 15 Raleigh Street

cleverly displayed rings on book pages

Cleverly displayed rings on book pages

new look new space in cupboard love

New look, new space in Cupboard Love


“Cupboard Love” supporting local art and innovative designers.

“Cupboard Love” supporting local art and innovative designers.

March 2015: Cupboard Love moved to: 15 Raleigh Street, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth.

“Cupboard Love” is tucked away in Raleigh Street in Richmond Hill,  just around the corner from the trendy Stanley Street strip of restaurants and coffee shops, just a few kilometres from us at Dempsey’s Guest House in Walmer.

At cheerful Cupboard Love, one can find beautiful cushions, purses, iPad pouch sling bags, tea towels, textiles, décor, clothing, jewellery. Also, art by Raymond J. Westraadt and :-

Hippos Ink greeting cards! Fun, original and local. Prices R10-00 to R29-00.

A wide variety of distressed frames, white, cream, brown, some blues. Priced from R95-00 to R250-00.

Handprinted canvas art works by Wild Rhubarb.

New Myang winter baby shoes. Sizes start at 0-3 months up to 18 – 24 months.

Yda Walt printed African Proverbs range.

Lovetrap vinyl stickers. Priced between R50-00 and R250-00.

Beautiful glass bead necklaces R225-00 – limited stock available.

Still to arrive: “Ceramic Factory” (new range) bigger variety of “So Good Candy” bags and backpacks.

Fashion evening mid May.

Urban Mini Market: THIS Saturday 27th April 2013      9am – 12 noon   Small market with a big heart.

Selling organic veges, olives, free range eggs, quiche, pies, breads, coffee, rooibos and pomegranate iced tea coolers. Get there early for fresh produce and good home-baked products, as well as Nespresso coffee. Also a small selection of seedlings: 6 in a tray for R16-00: rocket, broad beans, tomato, pawpaw. Small pots R14-00, large pots R20-00: mint, chives, sage, basil, gooseberries.

Where to find Cupboard Love? 15 Raleigh Street, Richmond Hill, Port Elizabeth.

Contact Carryn:

Cell:             076 626 5815




Trading Hours:

Mon to Fri:  10am – 4pm                 Sat:      9am – 1pm

Images from delightful Art Walk with Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism, December 2012

Images from delightful Art Walk with Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism, December 2012

On a hot and sticky day in early December, we set out with staff and friends of Nelson Mandela Bay Tourism, along the Art Walk in Central, Port Elizabeth. We popped in at the following: the Ron Belling Art Gallery, the Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, ART Gallery, artEC Gallery and the Tin House on Cuyler.

The Ron Belling Art Gallery is a converted Art Deco house situated in parkland Port Elizabeth. Although commercial, the Gallery is philanthropic in its commitment to promoting and encouraging an appreciation of art, especially in programmes aimed at the youth. The Gallery prides itself on the high standard of exhibitions by both established artists and local artists with promising talent. A permanent collection of Ron Belling Military Aviation paintings is also housed in the Gallery and was acquired for the benefit and enrichment of the Eastern Cape community.

Address: 30 Park Drive, St George’s Park, Port Elizabeth

Contact: Robyn Sharwood                       Phone: 041 586 3973

Email:             Website:


The Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum, formerly the King George VI Art Gallery, was opened on 22 June 1956 and renamed in December 2002.  The collections are housed in two buildings framing the entrance to St George’s Park and consist of South African art (particularly that of the Eastern Cape), British art, international printmaking and Oriental art (including Indian miniatures and Chinese textiles).

The Art Museum is open 7 days a week, except 1 January, Good Friday, Freedom Day, Workers’ Day, Youth Day & Christmas Day.

Weekdays: 09h00 – 18h00 (Closed Tuesday mornings);  Saturdays, Sundays: 13h00 – 17h00;

Public Holidays: 14:00 – 17:00;  irst Sunday of the month: 09h00 – 14h00

Please note: From 1 June – 31 August 2011, the closing times from Monday to Friday will be 17h00.

Last admission is 10 minutes before closing time.  Clearance of the exhibition halls begins 5 minutes before closing time.  Essential work may necessitate closing certain exhibition halls without notice.  Admission is free, except for events with advertised fees.


ART, is a new art venue in Nelson Mandela Bay. This intimate and dynamic space is the new studio of Anthony Harris as well as a gallery space for small exhibitions and art interventions.  The venue is also the offices of ART EVENTS – a company dedicated to the development of the Arts in Nelson Mandela Bay. Anthony Harris:

“I use the landscape as a metaphor. My work explores the complexity of the terrain in ways that challenge the viewers’ own boundaries and conventions of romanticising something, in the present, or may occur in the future – moving beyond our preconceived and comfortable  human perceptions. These landscapes hold within them aspects other than pure nature – the panorama is composed of elements that bear witness to change and evolution.”

Times:  Tuesdays to Fridays: 10h00 to 16h00                               Saturdays: 10h00 to 13h00

Closed on Sundays, Mondays, public holidays and festive season (15 Dec to 15 Jan).

Click here to “Like” ART on Facebook.

Address: 51B Cuyler Street, Central Hill, Port Elizabeth

Contact: Anthony Harris Phone: 072 379 5933                             Email:


artEC (formerly EPSAC) is a non profit organisation and Community Art Centre, set up for the advancement of the Visual Arts and Art Craftsmanship by working to uplift the arts in the Eastern Cape, South Africa, helping artists and encouraging a public interest in the arts.

artEC is a community art centre which houses two galleries, artists’ studios and a courtyard coffee shop. Perfectly situated in central Port Elizabeth, artEC embraces all artists in the Eastern Cape and offers a platform from which artists can network and market their works. They are committed to providing educational opportunities that lead to improving the standards of Eastern Cape art, and raising awareness of the visual arts amongst the public.   Exhibitions are held regularly on a two to three week basis. They also hold regular workshops and music/poetry evenings.

Gallery times:  Monday to Friday: 09h00 to 16h00        Saturday: 09h00 to 13h00

Closed Sunday and Public Holidays

Address: 36 Bird Street, Central, Port Elizabeth

Contact: Phone: 041 585 3641                 Fax: 086 274 7708

Email:                   Website:



The Tin House on Cuyler is a charming coffee shop situated at 35 Cuyler Street, Central (off Bird Street), Port Elizabeth. It is connected to Dessie’s at Bloomingdales in Walmer.  Interesting exhibitions of art works can be found adorning the walls of this quaint and cottagey coffee shop. Although the menu is not as extensive as the one available at Dessie’s at Bloomingdales, the quality you have come to expect from them is evident in the food that they serve at The Tin House. The ever-popular hand-crafted butter biscuits and other tasty goodies for which Dessie’s has become known are also available at The Tin House on Cuyler.

Tel: 041 582 4933

Trading hours: Monday – Friday 8.15am – 4pm

Saturday 8.15 am – 12.30 pm

Sundays – Closed

art gallery pe

ART Gallery, PE

art at art

Art at ART

artec bird street pe

artEC, Bird St, PE

artec mural

artEC mural

art info

ART info

nelson mandela metropolitan art museum

Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum

beadworks at nmm art museum

Beadworks at NMM Art Museum

beaded boots

Beaded Boots

ron belling art gallery

Ron Belling Art Gallery

aviation works at ron belling art gallery

Aviation works at Ron Belling Art Gallery

zebra lining at ron Bbelling

Zebra lining at Ron Belling

dessie's at tin house on cuyler

Dessie’s at Tin House on Cuyler

the tin house on cuyler

The Tin House on Cuyler

volksie for sale at tin house

Volksie for sale at Tin House

dessies eats

Dessie’s eats





Spring for Dempsey's SPRING SPECIAL:

From 1 September to 30 November 2019 Dempsey's Guest House is offering a 15% discount on accommodation.

ONLY valid for bookings made via our ONLINE BOOKING FORM HERE.