OWNING MANDELA - DOWN THE RABBIT HOLE

HERMANN VENTER | 14 MIN | SOUTH AFRICA | 2014

Owning Mandela is a short documentary film that explores the events surrounding the small rabbit that was placed in the ear of the Nelson Mandela sculpture, erected at the Union Buildings in Pretoria, South Africa in December 2013 by the artists Andre Prinsloo and Ruhan Janse van Vuuren. The rabbit became a controversial issue and raised questions about ownership, copyright and ethics within art production and public sculpture in particular. The film questions what it means to create a public work of a subject that is inscribed with a long and layered past, a collective history belonging to the public, and the impact this process had on the above-mentioned artists, both personally and professionally.