ANC fumes over Zuma's Spear

2012-05-17 17:31

Cape Town - The African National Congress (ANC) on Thursday expressed outrage at an artist's depiction of President Jacob Zuma, saying the representation of its leader is distasteful and indecent.

Artist Brett Murray's controversial painting showing Zuma with his fly open and penis exposed, sold for R136 000 at the Goodman Gallery in Johannesburg.

ANC spokesperson Jackson Mthembu said the "disgusting and unfortunate display of the president" is insulting, and the party is taking the matter to court.

"We have this morning [on Thursday] instructed our lawyers to approach our courts to compel Brett Murray and Goodman Gallery to remove the portrait from display as well as from their website and destroy all printed promotional material.

"We have also detected that this distasteful and vulgar portrait of the president has been displayed on a weekend newspaper and its website, we again have instructed our lawyers to request the said newspaper to remove the portrait from their website."

Murray's so-called piece of art dents the image and the dignity of Zuma as both president of the ANC, president of the republic and as a human being, Mthembu said.

The ANC also took exception to a second portrait,  which displays the party's logo "without the permission of the ANC", with the inscription "FOR SALE" on it.

"Both these portraits are a clear calculation to dismember and denigrate the symbols and the representative of the ANC, chief amongst them, the president of the ANC."

Mthembu said the ANC believes in both freedom of the press and artistic expression, but views "the vulgar portrait and the dismembering of the ANC logo by Brett Murray  an abuse of freedom of artistic expression and an acute violation of our constitution, apart from being defamatory".

"That is why we have instructed our lawyers to approach the courts in-view of these violations and the defaming nature of the so-called President Zuma portrait titled The Spear," he said.

  • Charles-Bronson - 2012-05-17 17:38

    This is call art. Not respec. You earn respect.

      Michele - 2012-05-17 19:49

      Whats wrong Charles ? You think the spear is to small ?

      Dave - 2012-05-17 20:52

      What can't speak, can't lie.

      Daniel - 2012-05-17 22:46

      This work is simply a public protest about a man who is supposed to be a dignified president, but instead he has painted this picture of himself for the world to see.

      farmfreund - 2012-05-17 23:45

      Zuma you old Rino

      Warmonger - 2012-05-18 10:23

      Wish some-one would hunt him for his 'horn....

      Mark - 2012-05-18 10:44

      Brilliant.... Zuma must wake up and realise how the world sees him

      Martin - 2012-05-18 11:13

      zuma the impotent communist

      Daniel - 2012-05-18 12:27

      The artist is only making the ANC and its president aware of the world's public opinion of him, and ultimately of us as a nation. In order to earn public respect, a state president has to demonstrate that he can successfully govern. Everybody knows what this ANC president does best. If you look at the other work on display, you will notice that it is a protest against poor governance. Zuma is more known for his "private" antics than for his competence as a president.

      Tuco - 2012-05-18 13:20

      ANC fumes over Zuma's Spear we are fuming over etolls crime n corruption

      Martin - 2012-05-18 14:07

      A slightly different take on the painting:

      Alan - 2012-05-18 14:53

      (Alan2) On the same news site today, there's an article about 166 000 pregnant teens. Hmmm....

      Jaba - 2012-05-18 14:53

      Malema bought the painting. He has hung it on the ceiling over his bed. Malema said that driving around in a million Rand car and a fifteen million Rand home can be stressful. Malema explained that the painting helps him reduce stress.

      Preshen - 2012-05-18 16:09

      The artist will face stiff charges

      mcgillveraysabino - 2012-05-19 08:41

      Zuma has no education Zuma has no birth control All in all you just are Another brick in the wall All in all you just are a machine gunner! Zuma and Vavi are bricks in the wall keeping South Africans in Poverty, and slaves of the anc.

  • jim.connolly.16 - 2012-05-17 17:38

    If there's no dignity there in the first place how on earth can one dent it??? ha ha ha ha he deserves what he gets and the masses deserve who they vote into power....the choice is their's!!

      jim.connolly.16 - 2012-05-17 18:17

      The more I look at this I just it's so funny and yet fitting...what a situation the ANC have created in this country, how they have failed their electorate...the absolute joke that they have become!! The ANC remains however the CURRENT CUSTODIANS of the ANC are simply an insult to the founders to this organisation. OK so lets have some Viva Viva Viva comrades????

      William - 2012-05-17 20:33

      Ironically i would have never heard about this painting had it not been for the ANC causing a stink. So; They have alerted the public about this picture;and have shown their ignorance around freedom of speech and art. WELL PLAYED SIRS.

  • evanknowles - 2012-05-17 17:40

    The ANC must have a HUGE... lawyer bill. I see they also believe in freedom of expression, but not _too_ much.

      ettienne.hattingh - 2012-05-17 18:30

      It's a bitter pill for the ANC that is "HARD" to swallow

      ettienne.hattingh - 2012-05-17 18:57

      It just drives me "nuts" that so many people are upset.

      Compos - 2012-05-18 05:39

      Freedom of expression! As long as you say what I want to hear....

      James - 2012-05-18 13:58

      They dont worry about their lawyers bills they dont pay them. We do as taxpayers

      Jenny - 2012-05-18 18:54

      If Helen Zille was painted with her boobs swinging, I doubt our lovely fair president Zuma would utter one word of complaint and would insist that freedom of speech and art should prevail. Still wondering why there has been NO condemnation from him of Cosatu members attacking the peaceful DA protest marchers.

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 22:29

      Part of the reason they steal us blind is to pay lawyers, I think.

  • Bokfan - 2012-05-17 17:41

    I think the artist grossly exaggerated our dear precedent's talents.The national jewels are nowhere near that impressive.

      Bokfan - 2012-05-17 17:42

      I am speaking of his stomach of course.

      Bokfan - 2012-05-17 19:22

      Aren't the clown jewels a national asset?

      Vince.York - 2012-05-17 20:56

      and for such an eternity I thought he only needed to be taken by the scruff of the "neck" and turfed out as he did so elegantly to his erstwhile 'colleague' // but then again I now see he hasn't either............ WHAT A CLOWN AND A JOKE

      Warmonger - 2012-05-18 10:24

      Clown jewels... LOLOLOL!!!!!! BRILLIANT!!!

      alansmartSnr - 2012-05-18 19:11

      Talk about respect.. Respect has no price, colour or creed. RESPECT IS ONLY WHAT PEOPLE EARN. IT'S NOT FOR FREE!!!!.. and besides, most of the population think he's a dick-head anyhow

  • mastersvoice - 2012-05-17 17:41

    I agree with the ANC. It is distasteful and indecent. It is also appropriate, as our beloved president has proven to be somewhat distasteful and indecent.

      Adrian - 2012-05-17 17:55


  • Mark Anthony Fysh - 2012-05-17 17:41

    Spear of the nation

      Sharon - 2012-05-17 18:28

      Gives new meaning to the word dictator!

      Vince.York - 2012-05-17 20:43

      @Sharon - PRICeLESS and it's just as well most referred to that other old man as "tata" and not this ....'TATOR

      Willie - 2012-05-18 14:47

      Perhaps the Southern Spears will rethink their name for Super Rugby.

  • Pacific - 2012-05-17 17:41

    The face looks more than zwelinzima vavi

      Warmonger - 2012-05-18 10:31

      Could even be Dlamini-zuma...

      mihaip007 - 2012-05-18 14:57

      which face are talking about - the one in the south???

  • bg - 2012-05-17 17:42

    Freedom of speech and expression is in our constitution. Amazing how the ANC bends the rules to suit their cause. When a president is in a polygomous relationship, and says taking a shower prevents HIV, it's hard for an artist not to use this as material.

      Jacobus - 2012-05-17 18:24

      No... he is not our president. The people should choose the president. Not the croonies. The insiders.

      goyougoodthing - 2012-05-17 18:30

      He deserves no respect and neither does the office of president. When will you understand that they are merely servants of the people... nothing more.

      Aristar - 2012-05-20 04:56

      The government is here to serve not to rule. The basis of a democratic system is that we, the voter, vote for the politicians to be put in place to SERVE US, not rule us.

  • Adam - 2012-05-17 17:42

    Seems he has a short fuse.

  • IcemanGP - 2012-05-17 17:43

    LOL, Oh well, I guess removing it from the website ain't gonna help much, cause once there, always there. Tough to face the truth there, artist forgot the shower.

      alansmartSnr - 2012-05-18 19:08

      ..@ Con.. How the hell can you defame anybody who is so inept, has so many corruption charges being investigated,(Prima faci)..So many wives, children, appointing and protecting crooks and thieves (fact)and screwing the whole country. Too many adverse things to mention - he is beyond being able to defame in my book.

      cyntay - 2012-05-18 19:52

      this picture must be on million of websites all over the world already millions must have saved it by now toooooo late to recall it now. the ANC brought the attention to this paint when they protested about it . if they had kept silent .. bought it and then stashed it away not many people would have known about it ..

  • Piet - 2012-05-17 17:43

    Why complain it's a free ad...

      mihaip007 - 2012-05-18 14:58

      After he stops being a president he should consider a career into porn movies

      Aristar - 2012-05-20 04:58

      @mihaip007 Doubtful. He probably couldn't keep going for more than two minutes without his horny goat weed. Porn stars work hard at looking beautiful and at stamina. The Zoomer is plain, old and has no stamina.

  • jaysonpaul.beckwith - 2012-05-17 17:44

    I so hope that Zappiro gets hold of this. Ohhhh can't wait.

      shaun.cousins1 - 2012-05-17 18:43

      ja a showerhead washing his spear...classic

  • EricksonTL - 2012-05-17 17:44

    Lol! This is what happens when you're in the public domain boys and girls. Get used to it. Resistance art did not die in 1994.

  • Cape - 2012-05-17 17:45

    Would've been more appropriate if he put it on his head.

      Cape - 2012-05-17 18:14

      or in his mouth....

      Warmonger - 2012-05-17 18:44

      BRILLIANT!!!! More brains "down-stairs" than 'up'!!

      Aristar - 2012-05-20 04:59

      Maybe Zuma is jealous and the painting shows bigger than what he's got. It is an excellent likeness of a duet - Zuma and his Malema

  • Nicholas - 2012-05-17 17:46

    Just the reaction the artist hoped for .... lots more to come ..

  • marcanthonytaylor - 2012-05-17 17:50

    The ANC Used me like a condom - attributed to some one who was in the news a while ago.

      marcanthonytaylor - 2012-05-17 17:53

      That said. How is that for a clever artist, this painting's value must be in the trillions, I want it as an investment.

      TSOTSI Smilification - 2012-05-17 18:00

      136,000 +/- I glanced a twit about it's value.

      mihaip007 - 2012-05-18 14:59

      oh my word - this comment is REALLY funny hahahahahahah

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 22:56

      Would not have that prick hanging on my wall for free.

  • Michael - 2012-05-17 17:55

    On me, a double Bells for Mr Murray! Now just think of the merchandizing opportunities here - -a T shirt with "I went to Africa and got f...ed" -A debt collecting agency to use the painting with the inscription,"Pay up or else" - or how about little Jacob dolls in all the curio shops with one of those mouthpieces at the back so when you blow into the thing a certain digit stands up and whistles - the possibilities are limitless -

      Dennis - 2012-05-17 18:10

      I want the T shirt

      Morne - 2012-05-18 12:31

      Dude, get the copyrights immediately!! I'm so in lol

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 22:30

      Everyone knows his a "standup" comic

  • elkita.robbertse - 2012-05-17 17:57

    Step down Zumna.No-one has respect for you.This is how people see you.The whole world is laughing tonight..

  • - 2012-05-17 17:59

    This will be interesting! Censoring art? Not a great idea Might not be my idea of art but no-one should define what art is? Question though - I understand that the ANC does not like its logo messed with but what has the Zuma picture got to do with the ANC. If Zuma doesn't like it he should take action in his personal capacity. Either way - It's art. Censoring art. The Nazis did that

      joshua.michau - 2012-05-17 23:13

      @siyadyosiba: concerning his personal life. the guy has become rich through politics and shady deals with shaik, the guys has knowingly had sex with HIV positive people while head of the Aids council and making moronic statements about showers etc etc. The guy is 70 and still womanising. the youth league leads shouted songs of death (albeit a traditional one) he excited hopeless individuals into a hating frenzy and also hates the media. Their personal lives aren't exactly doing much justice to the ANC? What does the ANC even stand for anymore? I don't know. It used to be a struggle party, but now its more of a money making machine for nepotistic hyenas who care nothing for the poor. Personally I like Vavi waaaay more. He is intelligent and is a good example of a leader. He works hard for a good cause. He is a better example of a leader.

      Alan - 2012-05-18 10:46

      They could censor it by painting a condom on it.............. Oh wait, he doesn't use condoms!!

      Iceberg - 2012-05-18 12:49

      Michael, Joe Blogs's painting would not have sold for that amount. Zuma is 70 odd I don't think he's obsessed with sex. He is only accumalating wives because the tax payer is going to fund his extended family after he steps down as the president. Its rather an insurance or retirement package for someone whose greed has no limit than anything else.

  • sika.ncamane - 2012-05-17 17:59

    Really as a country we don't need such a President. ANC must just recall him, he is a laughing stock of the coutry and the whole world...This is one of the many reasons I sometimes feel ashmed to be a South African. He should have been a role model but look at this mxm

      Phuti - 2012-05-17 22:44

      He is the worst president in the history of S.A.we want a leader who is respected & with one wife.

      calvin.n.phiri - 2012-05-17 23:06

      The truth is you are ashamed to be trapped in an African Skin.

      Merven - 2012-05-18 08:56

      @Calvin, with the ANC in power, I would too if I were black.

  • Nicky van der Vlies - 2012-05-17 17:59

    biggest bunch of idiots in the world the sa government jz just put that spear in a piece of cake and let someone eat it in public that would be nice

  • Jacques - 2012-05-17 17:59


      valcooperRSA - 2012-05-17 19:10

      Definitely not a peace pipe

  • mikembengo - 2012-05-17 18:00


  • Nicky van der Vlies - 2012-05-17 18:01


  • Nicky van der Vlies - 2012-05-17 18:01

    put that spear in a piece of cake

      conrad.reynecke - 2012-05-17 20:20

      or WARM apple pie.....

  • Jacques - 2012-05-17 18:02

    Artist forgot showerhead on top could ad more value to painting

  • Ronald - 2012-05-17 18:04

    I think that whoever bought the painting made a brilliant investment. Can you also see the price of it growing by the inch...., I mean minute.

      valcooperRSA - 2012-05-17 19:11


      Sheik - 2012-05-18 22:59

      ANC must have bought it.

  • Dennis - 2012-05-17 18:05

    Well this just goes to show what a joke the ANC has become. No wonder the country is heading down doom road. I guess your past is catching up with you Mr Zuma. I would have thought you guys would have watched the American political situation each time they go into an election. Don't under estimate the power of the media to ridicule anyone with ambitions of power. No wonder the government, OOPS sorry, the ANC, wants to change the constitution and enforce a censure law so that this type of embarrassment couldn't. Maybe its time the ANC called it quits or maybe changed leadership again like the last time. Only this time maybe they should give the stand in more credit for his integrity.

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 23:02

      Dennis, I don't think you'll find any within the ANC with integrity.

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 23:03

      Until the word's are printed on a T-shirt

  • Judy - 2012-05-17 18:06

    He painted exactly what most people see when they think of Zooma, so don't cry for me argentina.

  • Keith - 2012-05-17 18:06

    Spear of the Nation

      Keith - 2012-05-18 11:42

      Chaka Zula = Jacob Zuma hahahahaha

  • Pablo - 2012-05-17 18:07

    This is the president of the republic, so please leave your agendas you might have against Zuma as a person and respect human dignity.

      Warwick Bristow - 2012-05-17 18:09

      I am with you on this one. I don't like or respect Zuma at all but he is our president whether we like it or not and we have to respect the position he holds.

      Arthur - 2012-05-17 18:17

      Artistic license supersedes a corrupt rapist old bean.

      danny.levin.351 - 2012-05-17 18:44

      Pablo, respect is earned, cannot be dictated (or is is DICKtated?). Zooma is an ignorant womanizer who has become the laughing stock of every first-world dignitary he has ever met, as well as the educated citizens of SA. if he wants respect he needs to earn it. oissible ways would be to get all corrupt fatcats (including his nephew) tried and jailed (if convicted) then he would voluntarily stand trial and have his day in court isntead of interfering with the courts, I could go on, but you probably get my drift by now

      goyougoodthing - 2012-05-17 18:46

      The president is not afforded any respect - why, he is merely a servant of the people, respect is earned and he has failed. A government position is misunderstood like old tribal chiefs, which they are NOT.

      Peter - 2012-05-17 20:10

      Like the human dignity the DA gets shown? Anyway i didnt vote for him so hes not my president

      maria.roth.589 - 2012-05-17 20:49

      Pablo,I think that what people are trying to say is, that it is the office that should be respected and so should the incumbent respect it. That he does not is the problem.

      Diana - 2012-05-17 22:42

      @Michael better to call him Zumanoid

      whatevafreakshow - 2012-05-18 09:50

      That crack pot gnome has no dignity

  • Riaan - 2012-05-17 18:07

    Haha but its an accurate depiction not so? He is a baby making machine... even if that is all he is good for.

      Michael - 2012-05-17 21:49

      matt - and a very nervous little herd they are

  • Arthur - 2012-05-17 18:07

    It's ART you foolish ANC cadres, you can't sue someone over an art piece because it's subjective. Besides, I think he looks more like Vavi in this painting. If the painting was titled "JACOB ZUMA" you could sue, but it's called "THE SPEAR" so... BOOHOOO ANC! Hahahaha! Big kudo's to the nads of the Artist.

      Arthur - 2012-05-17 18:15

      Hahaha thumb me down, I could care less I'm laughing so much.

  • Burtfred - 2012-05-17 18:07

    Zuma, just like all men, has two heads. Unfortunately, he only knows how to use his lower one.

      Pablo - 2012-05-17 18:10

      And you will never be president, beat that retard!!!

      Burtfred - 2012-05-17 18:14

      Pablo, if being president requires me to be a crook and marry six different women simultaneously whilst having extra-marital affairs with various squeezas, well no, I probably will never be the president of SA.

      Peter - 2012-05-17 20:59

      @Pablo - LMFAO that was the worst come back i have ever heard in my entire life, oh jeez my eyes are watering hahaha thanks Pablo

  • Eric - 2012-05-17 18:07

    The Spear of the Nation.

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-05-17 18:08

    With so many wives there is no time to keep your zip up!

  • marcanthonytaylor - 2012-05-17 18:09

    If that's a spear, how are jousters depicted?

  • Muhammed - 2012-05-17 18:11

    Yoh!!! This is hellava funny!!! Media indecency?

  • Jacques - 2012-05-17 18:13

    I must admit, I feel I must thank the ANC. I've always wondered what it must have been like to live under Apartheid and the extreme cencorships. 'Destroy all material'? In this day and age? Ha!

  • Arthur - 2012-05-17 18:13

    Crikey, I haven't laughed this much the whole week - there are some priceless comments! Some of you should be career comedians! As for the sour grapes... well you can find a red door and paint it black for all I care.

  • Sonja - 2012-05-17 18:15

    LOLOLO whats the problem....Zumatjie has a small what!! hahahahahah

      TSOTSI Smilification - 2012-05-17 19:10

      Kensong... thats disrespectful. Didnt your mother teach you any better?

      TSOTSI Smilification - 2012-05-17 19:26

      It's offensive to woman... but I understand you are not used to treating them with respect.

      TSOTSI Smilification - 2012-05-17 20:09

      Yes... Ill quote you in order to contradict you... bring your idiocy to light! "How many have you sized in so to compare ?"

      Kent - 2012-05-18 12:44

      @ kensong.ben.7. Try the internet to see all pen*s for display, no experience necessary. From there anyone can make a comparison, you were personal in your comment. No No.

      tiaan.fourie - 2012-05-18 14:54

      kensong.ben.7 - Stop using big words to make yourself look smart. You're using them incorrectly anyway, so you're just making yourself look stupid. Now stop being disrespectful to women.

      alansmartSnr - 2012-05-18 19:12

      Talk about respect.. Respect has no price, colour or creed. RESPECT IS ONLY WHAT PEOPLE EARN. IT'S NOT FOR FREE!!!!.. and besides, most of the population think he's a dick-head anyhow

  • kobus.hattingh.5 - 2012-05-17 18:17

    Mean to tell us there is a painting out there that can prick his image more than he did himself already? It should go for millions I say ;)

      valcooperRSA - 2012-05-17 19:15

      I hope the artist gets very rich with this artsy will go down in history books I'm sure

  • jaysonpaul.beckwith - 2012-05-17 18:19

    I haven't seen the painting yet,, would love too though. But could someone please tell me if he was at least wearing a condom????

      Arthur - 2012-05-17 18:30

      You can't see it in the painting, but it's on a broomstick behind him.

      jaysonpaul.beckwith - 2012-05-17 18:34

      Hugh make me laugh. Good one Hugh.

      Sheik - 2012-05-18 23:09

      Jaysonpaul, that would be censorship.

  • Adrian - 2012-05-17 18:21

    He's cross because he doesn't want anybody but himself to make his name tottee

  • Johnathon - 2012-05-17 18:21

    What a wonderful (and simple) blast at the President! What a ridiculous and predictable response from the ANC. When are they going to learn to get a sense of humour and realise what satire is all about! JZ should have bought the pic and auctioned it off (with a laugh)for his favourite charity.

      Tugwana - 2012-05-17 20:04

      Let your potrait be shown with your fly open and let's see how funny would that be. You are s*ick

  • Ntshebe - 2012-05-17 18:22

    I'm not laughing, hahahahahah!!!!!!

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-05-17 18:23

    I am sure if they pained a naked picture of ZiLLe pole dancing for Vali she would have a good laugh.

  • sasekile - 2012-05-17 18:25

    M no Jacob fan but this ahah!

      siyadyosiba - 2012-05-17 18:49

      really its not acceptable.

  • whoowhoohoo - 2012-05-17 18:26

    Maybe if Zuma was the President of South Africa rather than the President of the ANC we would have more respect for him. He is no more than a bumbling fool in the eyes of the world.

  • valcooperRSA - 2012-05-17 18:27

    Doesn't look like zoomah...could be anyone who was caught with pants down