Two arrested for damaging Zuma artwork

2012-05-22 12:43

Johannesburg- A controversial painting of President Jacob Zuma in the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg was defaced by two men, gallery staff confirmed on Tuesday.

"One man painted a red X across Zuma's face and the second covered the painting with black paint," a gallery spokesperson said.

Both the face and waist of the painting were covered in black paint and no longer visible.

The painting, called The Spear by Brett Murray and bought by a German collector for about R136 000 was damaged on Tuesday at about 11:00.

The two men were being held by the gallery security team. The police were on their way there.

The painting, depicting Zuma with his genitals exposed, has sparked a furore, and prompted the ruling African National Congress to seek a court order for its removal from the gallery.

  • Peter - 2012-05-22 12:47

    Well done, SO you hated the painting... Hang on that hasnt changed a thing all you did was destroy the only evidence the ANC had. Bravo! The illogical thinking of some people is beyond believable

      Poloyatonki - 2012-05-22 12:52

      You are a Moron...

      clinton.badenhorst - 2012-05-22 12:53

      They will have to pay damages to Brett now... Hahahaha! Stupid idiots! Were the hell are they going to come up with R136 000??? Think before you act you stupid people! And defacing the original is not going to help anything because that painting has hundreds and thousands of electronic copies! It will NEVER disappear! Hail to The Spear!!!

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:54

      @Poloyatonki - Lol please explain? if your going to make a comment lets see your justification so we can all see what a fool you are

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:56

      @Pythagoras - That was the original value, i cant wait to hear what the new value is sitting at. These guys will be bankrupt before they even get to court

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:56

      So it happens to be a whitie who destroyed the painting. Give him a gantry!!!!

      Tsotsi-Baby - 2012-05-22 12:59

      Free our comrades. #Power to the people

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:59

      @Peter - What, one of the Gantries from e-tolls that the ANC wasted R30 Billion on? Then how is the ANC going to recoup their loses if they cant sell it for scrap metal?

      Freddie - 2012-05-22 13:01

      Actually Polidonkey, you are the moron. You and the rest of the illiterate rabble that claim democracy but show their true colours in damaging private property and attacking peaceful demostrators.

      Bryan - 2012-05-22 13:02

      @Poloneydonkey.. Eish bru!! You are beyond any help...

      Rob - 2012-05-22 13:08

      So what ? These two will receive a " Presidential pardon " anyway. Like the Terreblanche killers they will be hero's to millions. THAT is the sad reality !

      Charles-Bronson - 2012-05-22 13:11

      All this noise for someone usless as the one in the painting!

      shandukane.moshatana - 2012-05-22 13:13

      evidence destroyed?U must be joking or maybe u r still sleeping.....

      Lloyd - 2012-05-22 13:16

      so you got rid of the painting....well done good luck getting it off the internet :)

      lerato.kay.3 - 2012-05-22 13:17

      @Peter, I second that - You are a moron!!! What do you mean by destroying the evidence? So was this piece going to make its way to the court - See you soon on World's dumbest bloggers, I'm sure the prize is yours.

      Con - 2012-05-22 13:38

      Peter, you are a fool. What do you mean by " destroying the evidence" ? Do you think Zuma no wno longer has a case for damages for injury to his personality rights because the painting has been defaced ? You really and truly are stupid.

      Andrew - 2012-05-22 13:42

      Boy these okes are stupid.... They don't know that the artist had the whole thing planned and knew what reaction the painting would get from the ANC and its elite. Now the whole world’s watching on CNN and BBC and seeing how freedom of speech are being raped by a corrupt government in South Africa. The same happened with the DA – CUSATU march last week. Helen knew that there would be violence but thought its good propaganda for the outside world to see. The mighty ANC once supported and respected by the outside world, would bring its own downfall. Karma is a lady-like dog!!!

      gchigeza - 2012-05-22 13:51

      they loved it that is why they also painted it. A professor in Art also expressing his freedom of expression.

      maarten.slabbert.7 - 2012-05-22 15:54

      I'd buy both these guys a Bells!

  • jackal666.daniel - 2012-05-22 12:48

    Maybe the idiots should have read what the value of the painting was before they decided to vandalize it... LOL @ "THESE" IDJITS!!!

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:50

      That would have required them to actually think, which they obviously didn't do...

      jackal666.daniel - 2012-05-22 12:53

      Yeah Peter I obviously didn't think this through...

      malindi.mabaso - 2012-05-22 12:56

      Mabye the the artist should have re looked at his sense of homour before deciding to disrespect the 1st citezen of this country... This is not about for or against him as the person, for me it is about the statemen of this country and what we stand for... it is times like this that this country was ruled the way other African countries are because the artist will be at least arrested this painting will not even be for public viewing...

      Peter - 2012-05-22 13:00

      @malindi.mabaso - 1st citezen? Whose that? Jan van Riebeeck?

      Bergie - 2012-05-22 13:01

      It was a rubbish painting anyway...I think its quite funny actually. And watching white people get all huffy and puffy about it is even funnier.

      jackal666.daniel - 2012-05-22 13:03

      @Malindi the artist perfectly depicted the main problem and state of our nation. Remember your voice will disappear along with the artist's.

      cyanideandhappiness - 2012-05-22 13:04

      @Malindi - The rest of Africa is falling into a black hole, is that what you want for South Africa, I much prefer peace and freedom, even if the cost is someone drawing a willy on a canvas... You are offended by nothing!

      LostAndDamned - 2012-05-22 13:07

      malindi, thats right lets arrest people with different perspectives. its not like that hasnt been done in south africa before... freedom of expression through art should not be taboo. this is one mans expression. you will only find it offensive if what it symbolizes resonates with you, otherwise its just funny.

      Peter - 2012-05-22 13:08

      @mohau.moloto.5 - And you would still be an idiot at the same time...

      jackal666.daniel - 2012-05-22 13:08

      @Mohau and that makes you as big an idiot as the two criminals in this case. - 2012-05-22 13:12

      @Bergie - could not agree more - think this is just so funny now - people can now take off and untwist their knickers and get on with some more important things in life!

      Honest - 2012-05-22 13:28

      Human dignity is priceless , I think those supporting the painting should please make themselves available to receive the Thursday memorandum to be handed at the gallery .I am no supporter of JZ`s actions where he has been wrong and will not support any of the people in leadership , BLack or White . The issue here is I feel the painting borders on Insult and disrespect and deserves some reaction . I think the two genleman did a peaceful act of showing their utmost disgust for this painting .

      Con - 2012-05-22 13:40

      Jackass, I am sure Zuma will give them the R 130 000 out of the millions that he will get for the defamatory painting. These guys did the artist and gallery a favour by mitigating the damages.

  • Roger - 2012-05-22 12:49

    These two need to strike and jump up and down and demand thier Freedom. Everyone is doing this....

      Peter - 2012-05-22 12:52

      Their supporters should throw stones in the CBD, it works to get metro to stop giving taxi drivers fines, maybe it will have a simialr effect

  • Hugh_Influence - 2012-05-22 12:49

    I'll be very interested to hear about who these two guys are. I'm pretty sure they both have IQ's equivalent to plankton.

      nickey.vanrensburg - 2012-05-22 12:51

      Don't insult plankton least it has some good uses. :)

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 12:52

      Probably members of parliament.

      Hugh_Influence - 2012-05-22 12:56

      Sorry Nickey you're right, I should have gone with wallpaper but I couldn't find one ugly enough to fit the bill ;-)

      musamuskid - 2012-05-22 13:03

      one white, one black

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:07

      Oh yes, sorry, I forgot. The whole parliament is black. My bad.

      Hugh_Influence - 2012-05-22 13:10

      @musamuskid - yah but are they ANC cadres? Religious nutters? Looking for attention? I'm lank curious.

  • Christopher - 2012-05-22 12:51

    Did that wit ou get a tender from this...who is that guy, his family is going to go through hell...the most loved wit ou in the country NOT!!

      musamuskid - 2012-05-22 13:02

      ?... what are u trying to say

      Stille - 2012-05-22 13:10

      read slowly, this time, pay attention.

  • Poloyatonki - 2012-05-22 12:51

    They must be released... Give them a bells.

      eve.carrington - 2012-05-22 12:58

      Poloyatonki... You should be released.... from BREATHING!

      Ben - 2012-05-22 13:03

      I agree! Murray should pay them for promoting his painting all over the world. Story was just on BBC. Now everybody knows how dumb and corrupt our government is!!! Awesome!

      Bryan - 2012-05-22 13:04

      That really is a bit old now Polonydonkey... Get some new material bro... Oops sorry, you probably can't read, my bad!

      koo.doyle - 2012-05-22 13:05

      Don't feed the Poloyatonki troll....

      Peter - 2012-05-22 13:06

      @Poloyatonki - Using the line "Give them a bells" just shows how indoctrinated with the west you are!!! QUICKLY CLEANSE YOURSELF!!! Before its too late

      LostAndDamned - 2012-05-22 13:11

      yeah thats how it should work. one someone destroys anothers property, just let them go. its called freedom of expression. it is a human right in south africa. why do you find it so offensive? perhaps it depicts a certain truth you wish to hide from.

      Jaykayem - 2012-05-22 13:19

      @Poloyatonki i agree with you...those guys must be honored, they welcome to have drinks on me all goin to post bail for them even betta i dont think they will stay in cells long anyway..They are heroes

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 14:20


  • Nicola - 2012-05-22 12:53

    Well done you've just increased it's value!!

      musamuskid - 2012-05-22 13:02


  • nkulekweni - 2012-05-22 12:54

    Knowing our country, these thugs (who were probably paid), will be out on bail and their dockets will dissapear. They will be rewarded with very good jobs in government. The very real possibility exists that regardless of their (lack of) qualifications, they will be made chief directors or DDGs in the Department of Arts and culture where they will decide what projects will be funded and what projects will not. They have proved beyond what Malema managed to do, that they are happy to die for Zuma (and all that he stands for). Sies South Africa. Sies. At this moment I am very ashamed to be South African.

      musamuskid - 2012-05-22 13:01

      You are right... You are very ashamed

      khwezi.ndawonde - 2012-05-22 13:07

      nkule shut up, the older guy is a lecturer read properly before unyebeza nxa, ashamed to be a South African, this is politics for goodness sake, maybe you are not even a SOUTH African you didnt even vote, you are not even staying here nxa

      LostAndDamned - 2012-05-22 13:12

      its very sad when basic human rights are sacrificed.

      NrGx - 2012-05-22 13:16

      @musamuskid - and you should be ashamed you condone the very actions Madiba fought to eradicate. SHAME ON YOU, TRAITOR!

      nkulekweni - 2012-05-22 15:58

      Oh Khwezi..poor thing. He might be a professor of veternary science for all you know....that does not qualify him to make judgement on art. The brackets dear do mean something...that is why they are used. And it would certainly help you if you dealt with reality and not maybes. The fact that I hate corruption, the fact that I hate thugery, the fact that I hate the defacement of a profound work of art does not make me not South is not all (black) South Africans who celebrate the looting of the country me daft dear.

  • Werner - 2012-05-22 12:55

    Communism here we come!

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:01

      here we come for the 19th year.

  • YuccaN - 2012-05-22 12:56

    The guy who purchased this made a huge profit....

  • Sibongile - 2012-05-22 12:58

    Reason has finally prevailed!! This has just prevented another Zimbabwe, pity most of you fail to see this.

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:08

      Why? Would they chase farmers of their land for a painting of a prick who's prick is hanging out? I don't get your Zimbabwe comment.

      Marco - 2012-05-22 13:12


      Martin - 2012-05-22 13:13

      but alas we still live in zumbabwe, its worse,

      LostAndDamned - 2012-05-22 13:14

      destroying art and undermining freedom of expression has PREVENTED another zim? please explain...

      lerato.kay.3 - 2012-05-22 13:30

      @Heinz continue on this stupid warpath, undermining people's dignity and your kids will get what Sibongile is trying to say

      JouMa - 2012-05-22 13:34

      what you lot starving getting moered by police what a pity

  • Ben - 2012-05-22 12:58

    Congrats to the ANC and the 2 morons that defaced the painting... A good example of the stupidity of these 2 parties. They have take a painting that would have stayed a relatively obscure piece of work and unwittingly turned it into a worldwide news story, taking the painting all over the world via news agencies and all over the internet. Hahahaha!!! ANC you funnyyyyyyy.

      Ben - 2012-05-22 12:59

      Not to mention the world now knows that the ANC is against freedom of speech and that they dont understand art. Egg on face...egg on face.

  • glenn.lyons1 - 2012-05-22 12:58

    does this also fall under freedom of expression??? this whole thing is sad and pathetic

  • Leon - 2012-05-22 12:58

    wonder if the ANC will be paying the cost of the painting or will they (ANC) distance themselves from these two idiots

  • cyanideandhappiness - 2012-05-22 12:58

    Ah man... I wanted to buy that painting... Gonna have to settle for one of the gazillion copies they will make after all of this...

  • lmapheto - 2012-05-22 12:59

    The red paint guy is very interesting...the black paint dude is noted...unity in diversity...

  • Gavin - 2012-05-22 13:00

    these 2 dudes are obviously looking to board the ANC gravy train - we all know (nudge nudge wink wink) how the ANC favoured are 'punished'

  • Lenisto - 2012-05-22 13:00

    Give those guys who defaced the painting a Bells!

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:15

      Lenisto, wow! That was a cool comment! Geeeez you are special!

      paulmandlankosi - 2012-05-22 13:20

      These are two heroes, give them bells

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:24

      Wow Paul! Awesome!! Your comment is SOOO Cool!!!

      JouMa - 2012-05-22 13:35

      so are clive derby lewis and januz also heroes

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:45

      Paul, sorry. It was for paulmandlankosi (First part Paul)

      tobza.tilana - 2012-05-22 13:48

      Make one of them police chief, the other one a tender.

  • Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:01

    This is a sign. A sign that a better painting should be made.

      Hugh_Influence - 2012-05-22 13:06

      Hahaha I have to agree somewhat with you there.

  • Brent - 2012-05-22 13:02

    Talk about a smear campaign LOL!

  • Lauden Kirk - 2012-05-22 13:02

    Martar of the ANC.

  • musamuskid - 2012-05-22 13:04

    Let me get my popcorns!!! Welcome to Comedy SA

  • Luvo - 2012-05-22 13:04

    I was down and depressed until this piece of great news came through. They surely deserve a heroes welcome. That will teach these racists a lesson. Have loads of respect for these men!

      Francois - 2012-05-22 13:14

      I am surprised you can actually read and write...with opinions like that you must have an amoeba like IQ.

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:16

      What lesson is that? If you are racist, your painting will be repainted with black paint? NNNNNNNNNOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!

  • Ashwin - 2012-05-22 13:04

    Big up to those men who destroyed the painting. First Cosatu showed the world how they deal with a legal strike now ANC chows how they deal with something they do not agree with - DESTROY Viva Freedom Viva. This is what was fought for - NOT

  • Scouter - 2012-05-22 13:06

    If I were the artist concerned I would be rubbing my hands - what great 'exposure'........ if you'll forgive the play on words

  • Msika - 2012-05-22 13:08

    They did what was right for the African poeple, why arrest them?

      JouMa - 2012-05-22 13:12

      the poeple are poephols there is laws in the country just like you can sing that nursery rhyme just like that we can paint a true reflection of the country

      michael.a.devilliers - 2012-05-22 13:13

      Really? I think they just proved something else about "African" people.

      Peter - 2012-05-22 13:13

      Are you lord over all African people that you speak on all black peoples behalf?

      Blaine - 2012-05-22 13:14

      Its called, damage of someone else's property. Something the black culture choose to ignore. How would you feel if someone damaged or destroyed your car or house or even something of that price that belongs to you? How these hooligans handled the situation, is not the way forward.

      Rudi - 2012-05-22 13:15

      Destruction of property much?

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:17

      And what is right for them? Do you even have a clue what African people want?

  • lownabester - 2012-05-22 13:09

    No!!! Life in jail without parole......we need the Spear of the Nation, hahaha

  • Luvo - 2012-05-22 13:10

    These two men were expressing their own freedom of disgust to Brett Murray's freedom of expression

      michael.a.devilliers - 2012-05-22 13:12

      Vandalism is not freedom of expression - it's crime. Go back to school and get someone to teach you some basic morals.

      Lenisto - 2012-05-22 19:33

      Devilliers exposing someone's genitals is Definitely freedom of expression... Wow! In this country freedom of expression is used as an excuse to pass on demeaning and racist remarks. The central question we should ponder on to uncover this is: Who is able to exercise the freedom of speech and expression? How is it being exercised? The powerful and middle-class uses the media to discredit our leaders by portraying them as incompetent so that everyone can see that ' no black man should rule'. The majority of our people who live in dire conditions of poverty and unemployment due to the country's long history of colonialism and exploitation have no access to the media hence are unable to voice their opinions. The negative messages coming from the media come from the minority but trying to present it as everyone's view. Pathetic.

  • Carla - 2012-05-22 13:10

    I personally do not like the painting, but what do they think they have actually achieved by defacing it? It's still all over the internet and now that they have defaced the original, you will have even more people looking for in on the net!

  • clinton.badenhorst - 2012-05-22 13:10

    @ Paul - Dont insult our dolphins' intellect by comparing them with Trollyantonki please.

  • lenny001 - 2012-05-22 13:12

    What those guys did was the freedom of expression and they sould be realesed

      Rudi - 2012-05-22 13:14

      It was destruction of property you idiot.

      songezo.kilani - 2012-05-22 13:21

      @rudi and the painting was a \destruction\ of human rights you idiot

      WessBergg - 2012-05-22 15:23

      @songezo - actually destroying property is a crime, painting a nude is not....

  • Rudi - 2012-05-22 13:13

    What kind of selfrighteous douche, goes and paints on a R 139 000 painting?

  • Marima Optometrists Marima - 2012-05-22 13:13

    Justice done, the African way!!!! Zapiro keep watch, people are getting impatient with court outcomes

  • kaMazibuko - 2012-05-22 13:14

    Give those men a Bells......

  • Martin - 2012-05-22 13:15

    How valuable have they just made that painting/let alone more famous

  • Marcus - 2012-05-22 13:16

    The Goodman gallery staged this whole thing..white guy and black guy defacing the art - just too perfect. ..I would not be surprised if they were arrested by a blck and white cop.

  • scnzama - 2012-05-22 13:16

    The guys were expressing their freedom of is their right ,is,nt it?.Black and White working together.Amandla to the 2 heroes.we salute you

      Rudi - 2012-05-22 13:17

      At least there's that.

      WessBergg - 2012-05-22 15:25

      @scnzama - freedom of expression does not include vandalism.

  • songezo.kilani - 2012-05-22 13:16

    The painting got what it derseved to be honest, i'm all for freedom of expressiom and freedom of speech but not at someones expense

  • duduzile.nkosi - 2012-05-22 13:17

    Freedom of expression at its best! They must be released

      monkinsane - 2012-05-22 13:26

      Vandalism is a criminal offense last time I checked.

      WessBergg - 2012-05-22 15:26

      @dudu - actually destroying property is a crime, painting a nude is not....

  • joe.peters.56 - 2012-05-22 13:17

    Not a problem. The pictures of this painting are on the internet forever, and there are 1000's of artists, including Brett Murray, who are able to reproduce it :)

      Heinz - 2012-05-22 13:51

      And there is a Mark 2 aswell, my profile pic.

  • jndjoba - 2012-05-22 13:18

    bad thing 2 b an artist sumtym!

  • Proudly - 2012-05-22 13:20

    Love you guys. Give those men a Bells.

  • bseitisho - 2012-05-22 13:20

    Its abt time someone did something, good for them

  • gavin.lott.9 - 2012-05-22 13:21

    It can be painted again but this time get the size of the balls correct cause they weren't that big!!

      Senzo Mathebula - 2012-05-22 13:26

      One wonders how u know?

      Corne - 2012-05-22 13:30

      Yes, how do you know Gavin???

      Bonginkosi Ngubane - 2012-05-22 13:33

      I'm they bigger than yours moron

      asivhanga - 2012-05-22 13:39

      C'mon Gavin, we waiting, how do you know the size of his balls? Fantasizing i guess..!

      gavin.lott.9 - 2012-05-22 13:45

      Cause sometimes you gotta go down to go up!!'s the ANC way!

      asivhanga - 2012-05-22 13:53

      Don't be shy now, is that a real answer or you trying to play politician?

      gavin.lott.9 - 2012-05-22 13:56

      You obviously don't get it asivhanga....

  • zama.mhlongo.14 - 2012-05-22 13:22

    They should set up a fund account where we can deposit their bail money on. Hell!! I can pay the amount alone if needs be. Please hurry up mense. And I will propose that we change a street name in my neighbourhood to your names!!

      NrGx - 2012-05-22 13:26

      destruction of private property! do you support criminal activity?

      Corne - 2012-05-22 13:32

      A correctional services official condoning criminal activity...........

      JouMa - 2012-05-22 13:51

      how bout change your street name to clive derby lewis

      Chris - 2012-05-22 14:30

      I suggest that you put your money where your mouth is- the costs will increase as this drags on. I also suggest that you rope in fellow ignoramuses like poloneydonkey.

  • Carmen - 2012-05-22 13:22

    They have not taken away the effect of the artwork in any way - if anything, they have made it more renowned. Well done defacers, and well done ANC - what could have remained a mere piece of artwork, has been turned into a symbol for your anti-free speech tendencies.

  • erika.tolken - 2012-05-22 13:23

    I bet there's a great Trevor Noah sketch in the making here. Not that I think it's funny - just, Trevor will be. And we can all do with some laughter too.

  • Vince - 2012-05-22 13:23

    give those guys a bells... Halala #doesvictorydance#

  • barry.boake - 2012-05-22 13:26

    Here is the real crime, not the expression of a point of view through art, but the destruction of it.

  • Christopher Zoony De Croes - 2012-05-22 13:27

    its too late, can google the painting,, can print it, make as wallpaper ect ect damage has been done. should have made julius kneeling infront of zuma hahahahahahahahahahahaahahahahahahhahahaha