Vandals deface 'racist' portrait of Jacob Zuma that ANC tried to ban


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The Independent Culture

Two men vandalised a portrait depicting the South African President Jacob Zuma with his genitals exposed yesterday, intensifying a heated debate about the picture that has enraged the ruling ANC party.

The picture – called "The Spear" – is a facsimile of a famous poster of Vladimir Lenin, and is part of an exhibition at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg addressing the perception of corruption in Nelson Mandela's former liberation movement. The artist, Brett Murray, is well-known in South Africa for his work criticising the white-minority apartheid government that ended in 1994.

The ANC had already launched a legal bid to try to force the gallery to remove the picture, which it described as crude and racist.