Judith Mason born Judith Seelander Menge was a South African artist who worked in oil, pencil and mixed media. Her work is rich in mythology, displaying a rare technical virtuosity. Judith Mason was born in Pretoria, she matriculated at the Pretoria High School for Girls in 1956. In 1960, she was awarded a BA Degree in Fine Arts at the University of the Witwatersrand, she taught painting at the University of the Witwatersrand, the University of Pretoria, the Michaelis School of Fine Art in Cape Town, Scuola Lorenzo de' Medici in Florence, Italy from 1989 to 1991 and acted as external examiner for under-graduate and post-graduate degrees at Pretoria, Natal and Cape Town Universities. Several of Mason's works deal with the atrocities uncovered by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission. Mason died in White River 28 December 2016. Mason was motivated by a strong social conscience, her work is informed by people, creatures and sometimes works of poetry, that touched or disturbed her. Her images run the gamut from expressionist through representational and starkly symbolic.
The history and ritual of Christianity and the eastern religions provided a fertile fund of inspiration for her work. Mason felt that formalised theology has destroyed the spiritually-nourishing mythological character of primitive religion. "Mason's pieces are sometimes imbued with lyrical and poetic overtones, sometimes informed by the poetry of Christopher Smart and Wilfred Owen, another important feature of her work is the synthesis she established between beauty and ugliness. A beautifully drawn or painted face gives way to a gaping, snarling monster... The beauty/ugliness, or abjection, dichotomy in Mason's work is no other than an expression of how awful pain is. Mason stated that "All the arts are forms of play." "The Man Who Sang and The Woman Who Kept Silent'. Justice Albie Sachs considers Judith Mason's "The Man Who Sang and the Woman Who Kept Silent" to be "one of the great pieces of art in the world of the late 20th century" This piece was inspired by two stories Mason heard on the radio at the time of the Truth and Reconciliation hearings.
They told of the execution of two liberation movement cadres by the security police. One was Harold Sefola, who as Mason relates, "asked permission to sing Nkosi Sikelel’ iAfrika" before he was electrocuted; as the TRC found, before NdwandWe was killed, she "fashioned a pair of panties for herself out of a scrap of blue plastic." This moved Mason to make a dress of blue plastic bags, inscribed with text beginning: "Sister, a plastic bag may not be the whole armour of God, but you were wrestling with flesh and blood, against powers, against the rulers of darkness …" "I paint in order to make sense of my life, to manipulate various chaotic fragments of information and impulse into some sort of order, through which I can glimpse a hint of meaning. I am an agnostic humanist possessed of religious curiosity who regards making artworks as akin to alchemy. To use inert matter on an inert surface to convey real energy and presence seems to me a magical and privileged way of living out my days". Judith Mason, 2004 "Hyenas like artists, are scavengers prowling on the edge of society.
I love hyaenas because of their other-worldly whooping, their ungainliness and their "bad hair". I regard the animal as a apt image of the'id' in opposition to the ego and the super-ego, the monkey on my back. In the three lithographs I have depicted The Muse by Day as a Hyaena in guinea fowl's clothing, the spots as disguise or drag to celebrate the gift of mimicry. In the Muse by Night I have concentrated on the animal as far-seeing, seer-like with the coat of spots as shaman's eyes. In Muse Amused I have tried to celebrate a despised animal having an existential guffaw." Judith Mason, 2006 Major retrospective: Judith Mason'A Prospect of Icons' Standard Bank Gallery 2 – – 6 October December 2008 and Sasol Art Museum, University of Stellenbosch 14 January to March 2009. Catalogue published in conjunction with the exhibition. Mason's artist's books were showcased in Washington DC at the National Museum for African Art for the'Artists' Books and Africa' exhibition ended 11 September 2016.'Undiscovered Animals' June 2016 was her final exhibition.
Mason exhibited in South Africa, with works in all the major South African art collections as well as in private and public collections in Europe and the United States. Exhibitions of her work have been held in Greece, The Netherlands, Chile, Switzerland, New York and Miami, her major public commissions include: The Man Who Sang and The Woman Who Kept Silent aka The Blue Dress at the Constitutional Court in Johannesburg, South Africa. Several large tapestries in collaboration with Marguerite Stephens and stained-glass window designs for the Great Park Synagogue in Johannesburg. In 2008, from 2 October to 6 December 2008, the Standard Bank Gallery in Johannesburg, South Africa hosted a major retrospective of paintings, assemblage, artists books and essays. Sasol Art Museum at the University of Stellenbosch installed the same retrospective titled: A Prospect of Icons from 14 January to 28 March 2009, her first solo exhibition was at Gallery 101, Johannesburg, in 1964 after winning second prize in the U.
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South African Republic
The South African Republic referred to as the Transvaal Republic, was an independent and internationally recognised country in Southern Africa from 1852 to 1902. The country defeated the British in what is referred to as the First Boer War and remained independent until the end of the Second Boer War on 31 May 1902, when it was forced to surrender to the British. After the war the territory of the ZAR became the Transvaal Colony; the land area, once the ZAR now comprises all or most of the provinces of Gauteng, Limpopo and North West in the northeastern portion of modern-day Republic of South Africa. Constitutionally the name of the country was the Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek; the ZAR was commonly referred to as Transvaal in reference to the area over the Vaal River, including by the British and European press. The British objected to the use of the name Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek. After the end of the First Boer War, the ZAR became a British Suzerain and in the Pretoria Convention of 3 August 1881, the British insisted on the use of the name Transvaal over Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek.
This convention was renegotiated in the London Convention dated 27 February 1884, a subsequent treaty between Britain and the ZAR, Britain acquiesced and the ZAR reverted to the use of the previous name. The name of the South African Republic was of such political significance that on 1 September 1900, the British declared by special proclamation that the name of the country be changed from Zuid-Afrikaansche Republiek to the Transvaal; this proclamation was issued during the British occupation of the region in the Second Boer War and while the ZAR was still nominally an independent country. On 31 May 1902, the Treaty of Vereeniging was signed with the government of the South African Republic, the Orange Free State government, the British government, ending the war, converted the ZAR into the Transvaal Colony. Following the establishment of the Union of South Africa in 1910, the Transvaal Colony became Transvaal Province; the name Transvaal was changed in 1994, when the South African government broke up the province into four provinces and renamed the core region to Gauteng.
In paleolithic times, between 2.2 and 3.3 million years ago, hominids lived within the geographic area of the ZAR. The earliest hominid bones, between 2.2 and 3.3 million years old, were discovered at Sterkfontein in 1994. In 1938 Paranthropus robustus bones were found at Kromdraai, during 1947 several more examples of Australopithecus africanus were uncovered in Sterkfontein; the South African Republic came into existence on 17 January 1852, when the United Kingdom signed the Sand River Convention treaty with about 40,000 Boer people, recognising their independence in the region to the north of the Vaal River. The first president of the ZAR was Marthinus Wessel Pretorius, elected in 1857, son of Boer leader Andries Pretorius, who commanded the Boers to victory at the Battle of Blood River; the capital was established at Potchefstroom and moved to Pretoria. The parliament had 24 members; the South African Republic was forcefully annexed by Britain in 1877, during the British' attempt to consolidate the states of southern Africa under British rule.
Long-standing Boer resentment turned into full-blown rebellion in the Transvaal, the First Boer War broke out in 1880. The conflict ended as soon as it began with a decisive Boer victory at Battle of Majuba Hill; the ZAR became independent on the 27 February 1884, when the London Convention was signed. The country independently entered into various agreements with other foreign countries after that date. On 3 November 1884 the country signed a Postal convention with the government of the Cape Colony and similarly with the Orange Free State. On the November 1859, the independent Republics of Lijdenburg and Utrecht merged with the ZAR. On 9 May 1887, burghers from the territories of Stellaland and Goosen were granted rights to the ZAR franchise. On 25 July 1895 the burghers that took part in the battle at Zoutpansberg, were granted citizenship of the ZAR; the constitution of the South African Republic has been referred to as interesting for its time. It contained provisions for the division between the political leadership and office bearers in government administration.
The legal system had adopted a jury system. Laws were enforced by the South African Republic Police which were divided into Mounted Police and Foot Police. On 10 April 1902, the Magistrates Court powers were extended to increase the civil ceiling amounts and to expand criminal jurisdiction to include all criminal cases not punishable by death or banishment. Established was a Municipal Government, Witwatersrand District court and the High Court of Transvaal; the State and Church were not separated in the constitution of the ZAR, citizens of the ZAR had to be members of the Dutch Reformed Church. In 1858 these clauses were altered in the constitution to allow for the Volksraad to approve other Dutch Christian churches; the Reformed Church was approved by the Volksraad in 1858, which had the effect of allowing Paul Kruger, of the to remain a citizen of the ZAR. The Bible itself was often used to interpret the intention of legal documents; the Bible was used to interpret a prisoner exchange agreement, reached in terms of the Sand River Convention, between a commando of the ZAR, led by Paul Kruger and a Commando of the Orange Free State.
President Jacobus Nicolaas Boshoff had issued a death sentence over two ZAR
Sir Winston Leonard Spencer-Churchill, was a British politician, army officer, writer. He was Prime Minister of the United Kingdom from 1940 to 1945, when he led Britain to victory in the Second World War, again from 1951 to 1955. Churchill represented five constituencies during his career as a Member of Parliament. Ideologically an economic liberal and imperialist, for most of his career he was a member of the Conservative Party, which he led from 1940 to 1955, but from 1904 to 1924 was instead a member of the Liberal Party. Of mixed English and American parentage, Churchill was born in Oxfordshire to a wealthy, aristocratic family. Joining the British Army, he saw action in British India, the Anglo–Sudan War, the Second Boer War, gaining fame as a war correspondent and writing books about his campaigns. Elected an MP in 1900 as a Conservative, he defected to the Liberals in 1904. In H. H. Asquith's Liberal government, Churchill served as President of the Board of Trade, Home Secretary, First Lord of the Admiralty, championing prison reform and workers' social security.
During the First World War, he oversaw the Gallipoli Campaign. In 1917, he returned to government under David Lloyd George as Minister of Munitions, was subsequently Secretary of State for War, Secretary of State for Air Secretary of State for the Colonies. After two years out of Parliament, he served as Chancellor of the Exchequer in Stanley Baldwin's Conservative government, returning the pound sterling in 1925 to the gold standard at its pre-war parity, a move seen as creating deflationary pressure on the UK economy. Out of office during the 1930s, Churchill took the lead in calling for British rearmament to counter the growing threat from Nazi Germany. At the outbreak of the Second World War, he was re-appointed First Lord of the Admiralty before replacing Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain in 1940. Churchill oversaw British involvement in the Allied war effort against Germany and the Axis powers, resulting in victory in 1945, his wartime leadership was praised, although acts like the Bombing of Dresden and his wartime response to the Bengal famine generated controversy.
After the Conservatives' defeat in the 1945 general election, he became Leader of the Opposition. Amid the developing Cold War with the Soviet Union, he publicly warned of an "iron curtain" of Soviet influence in Europe and promoted European unity. Re-elected Prime Minister in 1951, his second term was preoccupied with foreign affairs, including the Malayan Emergency, Mau Mau Uprising, Korean War, a UK-backed Iranian coup. Domestically his government developed a nuclear weapon. In declining health, Churchill resigned as prime minister in 1955, although he remained an MP until 1964. Upon his death in 1965, he was given a state funeral. Considered one of the 20th century's most significant figures, Churchill remains popular in the UK and Western world, where he is seen as a victorious wartime leader who played an important role in defending liberal democracy from the spread of fascism. Praised as a social reformer and writer, among his many awards was the Nobel Prize in Literature. Conversely, his imperialist views and comments on race, as well as his sanctioning of human rights abuses in the suppression of anti-imperialist movements seeking independence from the British Empire, have generated considerable controversy.
Churchill was born at the family's ancestral home, Blenheim Palace in Oxfordshire, on 30 November 1874, at which time the United Kingdom was the dominant world power. A direct descendant of the Dukes of Marlborough, his family were among the highest levels of the British aristocracy, thus he was born into the country's governing elite, his paternal grandfather, John Spencer-Churchill, 7th Duke of Marlborough, had been a Member of Parliament for ten years, a member of the Conservative Party who served in the government of Prime Minister Benjamin Disraeli. His own father, Lord Randolph Churchill, had been elected Conservative MP for Woodstock in 1873, his mother, Jennie Churchill, was from an American family whose substantial wealth derived from finance. The couple had met in August 1873, were engaged three days marrying at the British Embassy in Paris in April 1874; the couple lived beyond their income and were in debt. In 1876 John Spencer-Churchill was appointed Viceroy of Ireland, with Randolph as his private secretary, resulting in the Churchill family's relocation to Dublin, when the entirety of Ireland was part of the United Kingdom.
It was here that Jennie's second son, was born in 1880. Throughout much of the 1880s Randolph and Jennie were estranged, during which she had many suitors. Churchill had no relationship with his father, his relationship with Jack would be warm, they were close at various points in their lives. In Dublin, he was educated in reading and mathematics by a governess, while he and his brother were cared for by their nanny, Elizabeth Everest. Churchill was devoted to her and nicknamed her "Woomany". Visits home were to Connaught Place in L
Pretoria is a city in the northern part of Gauteng province in South Africa. It straddles the Apies River and has spread eastwards into the foothills of the Magaliesberg mountains, it is one of the country's three capital cities, serving as the seat of the administrative branch of government, of foreign embassies to South Africa. Pretoria has a reputation for being an academic city with three universities, the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research and the Human Sciences Research Council; the city hosts the National Research Foundation and the South African Bureau of Standards making the city a hub for research. Pretoria is the central part of the Tshwane Metropolitan Municipality, formed by the amalgamation of several former local authorities including Centurion and Soshanguve. There have been proposals to change the name of Pretoria itself to Tshwane, the proposed name change has caused some public controversy. Pretoria is named after the Voortrekker leader Andries Pretorius, within South Africa sometimes called the "Jacaranda City" due to the thousands of jacaranda trees planted in its streets and gardens.
Pretoria was founded in 1855 by Marthinus Pretorius, a leader of the Voortrekkers, who named it after his father Andries Pretorius and chose a spot on the banks of the "Apies rivier" to be the new capital of the South African Republic. The elder Pretorius had become a national hero of the Voortrekkers after his victory over Dingane and the Zulus in the Battle of Blood River; the elder Pretorius negotiated the Sand River Convention, in which the UK acknowledged the independence of the Transvaal. It became the capital of the South African Republic on 1 May 1860; the founding of Pretoria as the capital of the South African Republic can be seen as marking the end of the Boers' settlement movements of the Great Trek. During the First Boer War, the city was besieged by Republican forces in December 1880 and March 1881; the peace treaty which ended the war was signed in Pretoria on 3 August 1881 at the Pretoria Convention. The Second Boer War resulted in the end of the Transvaal Republic and start of British hegemony in South Africa.
The city surrendered to British forces under Frederick Roberts on 5 June 1900 and the conflict was ended in Pretoria with the signing of the Peace of Vereeniging on 31 May 1902 at Melrose House. The Pretoria Forts were built for the defence of the city just prior to the Second Boer War. Though some of these forts are today in ruins, a number of them have been preserved as national monuments; the Boer Republics of the ZAR and the Orange River Colony were united with the Cape Colony and Natal Colony in 1910 to become the Union of South Africa. Pretoria became the administrative capital of the whole of South Africa, with Cape Town the legislative capital and Bloemfontein served as the judicial capital. Between 1910 and 1994, the city was the capital of the province of Transvaal. On 14 October 1931, Pretoria achieved official city status; when South Africa became a republic in 1961, Pretoria remained its administrative capital. Pretoria is situated 55 km north-northeast of Johannesburg in the northeast of South Africa, in a transitional belt between the plateau of the Highveld to the south and the lower-lying Bushveld to the north.
It lies at an altitude of about 1,339 m above sea level, in a warm, fertile valley, surrounded by the hills of the Magaliesberg range. Pretoria has a humid subtropical climate with long hot rainy summers and short cool to cold, dry winters; the city experiences the typical winters of South Africa with cold, clear nights and mild to moderately warm days. Although the average lows during winter are mild, it can get cold due to the clear skies, with nighttime low temperatures in recent years in the range of 2 to −5 °C; the average annual temperature is 18.7 °C. This is rather high, considering the city's high altitude of about 1,339 metres, is due to its sheltered valley position, which acts as a heat trap and cuts it off from cool southerly and south-easterly air masses for much of the year. Rain is chiefly concentrated in the summer months, with drought conditions prevailing over the winter months, when frosts may be sharp. Snowfall is an rare event. During a nationwide heatwave in November 2011, Pretoria experienced temperatures that reached 39 °C, unusual for that time of the year.
Similar record-breaking extreme heat events occurred in January 2013, when Pretoria experienced temperatures exceeding 37 °C on several days. The year 2014 was one of the wettest on record for the city. A total of 914 mm fell up with 220 mm recorded in this month alone. In 2015 Pretoria saw its worst drought since 1982. January 2016 saw Pretoria reach a new record high of 44 °C on 7 January 2016. Depending on the extent of the area understood to constitute "Pretoria", the population ranges from 700,000 to 2.95 million. The main languages spoken in Pretoria are Sepedi, Setswana, Xitsonga and English; the city of Pretoria has the largest white population in Sub-Saharan Africa. Since its founding it has been a major Afrikaner population centre
Patrick Gaspard is the president of the Open Society Foundations. Ambassador Gaspard has overseen the Open Society Foundations’ advocacy work in Washington and Brussels, as well as provides strategic direction and oversight to the organization’s programmatic agenda, he became the president of OSF upon the departure of Chris Stone, announced in September 2017. He served as United States Ambassador to South Africa, he is a noted Democratic Party political campaign strategist. Born in the Democratic Republic of Congo to Haitian parents, Gaspard moved with his parents to the United States when he was three years old. Gaspard graduated from Brooklyn Technical High School and attended Columbia University from 1994 to 1997, he has two children. As the U. S. ambassador to South Africa from 2013-16, Gaspard worked to strengthen civil society and worked in partnership with the South African government to develop the country’s healthcare infrastructure and to support innovations in local governance. He worked to connect South African entrepreneurs to United States markets.
Prior to becoming ambassador to South Africa, Gaspard was most well known for his time at the White House and as the day-to-day leader of the Democratic Party headquarters. He served as the Executive Director of the Democratic National Committee from 2011-13, overseeing the party committee's efforts to re-elect President Obama, he was the Director of the White House Office of Political Affairs for the Obama administration from January 2009-11, Associate Personnel Director of President-elect Obama's transition team, National Political Director of Barack Obama's 2008 presidential campaign. Gaspard's early career was spent in New York City, including working on the 1988 Jesse Jackson presidential bid and David Dinkins's successful 1989 mayoral campaign, he went on to serve as a special assistant in the Office of the Manhattan Borough President and special assistant in the Office of Mayor Dinkins, from 1998-1999, chief of staff to the New York City Council. In 2003-2004, he worked for Governor Howard Dean's 2004 presidential campaign as the National Deputy Field Director, in 2004, was the National Field Director for America Coming Together.
Gaspard spent nine years as the executive vice president for politics and legislation for the 1199SEIU United Healthcare Workers East labor union, the largest local union in America. It was leaked in March 2013 that President Obama was planning to nominate Gaspard to the post of United States Ambassador to South Africa, his Senate confirmation hearing was held on July 24, 2013, he was sworn into the post on August 26, 2013. Gaspard is a close friend of the Mayor of New York City. In September 2013, he brokered a peace between de Blasio and his primary rival Bill Thompson that prevented Thompson from challenging de Blasio in a runoff. Earlier, de Blasio had thanked Gaspard in his primary victory speech. Gaspard claimed in a tweet on 13 January 2018 that South Africa has a "more inclusive" constitution than the United States