Controversial artist Ayanda Mabulu smashes car, claims he was followed

Damage to controversial artist Ayanda Mabulu's car after he was apparently followed from the Primedia building in Sandton, where he had spoken about his latest artwork. (supplied)
Damage to controversial artist Ayanda Mabulu's car after he was apparently followed from the Primedia building in Sandton, where he had spoken about his latest artwork. (supplied)

Controversial artist Ayanda Mabulu says he was left shaken and with damage to his car after he was followed by two men in a Silver Volvo after a radio interview on Thursday morning.

While he did not know why the men were harassing him, he said he had spoken about his latest artwork during the interview and listeners would have known when he was leaving the building in Sandton.

"I don't want to accuse anyone but that is the only thing I can think of."

He had joined Talk Radio 702's Eusebius McKaiser and Nelson Mandela Foundation CEO Sello Hatang to discuss the merits and critique of his latest work featuring the late statesman, which had left many tongues wagging.

The artwork is a swastika flag with Nelson Mandela raising his arm in what appears to be a Nazi salute and the words "unmasked piece of shit" written across the bottom of the image. 

The Nelson Mandela Foundation said the artwork, which was briefly on display at the FNB Joburg Art Fair without authorisation, was "deeply offensive" and it was considering taking steps against it.

'This won't stop me'

The work follows previous controversial pieces over the years.

In one, Nkosazana Dlamini-Zuma is depicted engaged in sexual activity as former president Jacob Zuma stands with his genitals exposed. Another work features a nude Zuma and Mandela seemingly having sex on an ornate gold and red chair.

Mabulu said on Thursday that he had noticed a silver or grey Volvo behind him, with two occupants flicking the lights, hooting and shouting.

"I thought maybe they need to pass so I moved aside. They kept flickering. Then I thought let me pull over, maybe it's people who know me but I realised I don't know them so I decided to keep driving."

He said he started to panic when he realised he was being followed and because the vehicle tried to cut off other cars on the road.

As he approached a traffic light in his bid to escape, he ended up crashing into a car in front of him.

He intended opening a case with the police, even though he did not know who the men were.

"I'm fine... this won't stop me," he said.

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