Press release: Memories of the Struggle: Australians Against Apartheid an exhibition by ASAA

A multimedia exhibition that launches this week is to showcase a photographic timeline of events that weaves together a narrative of Australia’s involvement in the fight against apartheid.

australians against apartheid exhibition
Premier of Gauteng Province, Mr David Makhura, is one of the people to officially open the multimedia exhibition. (Image: GCIS)

Johannesburg, Monday 30 October 2017 – The Australasian South African Alliance (ASAA), in partnership with the Australian High Commission in South Africa, Brand South Africa and Constitution Hill, will launch an exhibition titled – Memories of the Struggle: Australians Against Apartheid, in Johannesburg on Thursday, 02 November 2017 at Constitution Hill at 18h30.

This multimedia exhibition, to be officially opened by the Premier of Gauteng Province, Mr David Makhura and the Australian High Commissioner to South Africa, His Excellency, Mr Adam McCarthy, is a photographic timeline of events that weaves together a narrative of Australia’s involvement in the fight against apartheid.

It will share insights into the Australian contribution to the collapse of apartheid, such as the ‘Stop the Tours’ movement which served to sever cricket and rugby relations with Apartheid South Africa. Such activism did not occur without political controversy or conflicts as related throughout the various sections of the exhibition.

Several former activists such as
• Anthony Abrahams, one of the Wallabies who campaigned against the 1971 rugby tour
• Meredith Burgmann and Verity Burgmann who famously stopped the game in Sydney (where Meredith was given a two-month jail sentence)
• Ken Davis and Frances Letters, who were both arrested during sporting tour protests
• Jane Singleton, former Chair of the Australian National ANC Support Committee will be present at the launch and will be joined by a number of South African expats – Natalie Hendricks, Sybil Wakefield, Ish Larney, Pat Wagner – active then under the umbrella of the AAAM as well as currently under that of ASAA. Fellow compatriot, Angus Leendertz, an UCT alumnus, now resident in Sydney, is the curator of this innovative ‘step back into history and personal memories’.

“Brand South Africa is honoured to be partnering with the ASAA in the execution of the exhibition, especially at such a historical place such as Constitution Hill, which symbolises South Africa’s journey to democracy”, said Brand South Africa’s CEO Dr Kingsley Makhubela.

“We are indeed proud to be welcoming the exhibition within the Constitution Hill precinct which indeed serves as an effective custodian and proponent of Constitutionalism, Human Rights and Democracy in South Africa. It is a living museum where the past, present and future collide in a unique paradox that celebrates the victory of our present day democracy. A visit here leaves you forever changed with the unrelenting resolve ‘never again must one human being treat another human being in this manner, said ConHill CEO Ms Dawn Robertson.

The exhibition, though focused on Australia, surfaces a largely unknown ‘history’ and narrative among the local general public of the significant roles played by social justice activists around the globe in support of the anti-apartheid struggle whether through blockades of armaments factories by workers in the UK; the vigorous divestment campaigns on campuses throughout the USA; the ‘End Bank Loans’ and ‘Boycott Outspan Oranges’ campaigns across most of Western Europe, the UK and Japan!

“This celebration of activism fits so well with the current (social justice) campaigns that prove you CAN make a difference. Principled and gutsy Australians helped make a difference to the lives of hundreds of thousands of South Africans”, said former Chair of the Australian National ANC Support Committee, Ms Jane Singleton.

“I hope that visitors to the exhibition leave with the knowledge that Australia was, and remains today, a friend and supporter of a free and democratic South Africa”, said Australian High Commissioner, His Excellency Mr Adam McCarthy.

Media is invited as follows:
High-res pictures are available on request.

Date: Thursday, 02 November 2017
Time: 17:00 for pre-interviews
18:30 Official Opening
Venue: The Constitution Hill,
11 Kotze Road, Johannesburg

RSVP and for more information or to set up interviews, please see contacts below:
RSVPS/Enquiries: Ntombi Ntanzi
Tel: +27 11 712 5061
Mobile: +27 (0) 81 704 1488
Email: ntombin@brandsouthafrica.com

Notes to the Editor

About the Exhibition
Memories of the Struggle – Australians Against Apartheid

About Brand South Africa
Brand South Africa is the official marketing agency of South Africa, with a mandate to build the country’s brand reputation, in order to improve its global competitiveness. Its aim is also to build pride and patriotism among South Africans, in order to contribute to social cohesion and nation brand ambassadorship.

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