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The Gareth Cliff Portrait

Gareth Cliff

Artist: Taf [Tafadzwa Mukwashi]
Triptych, oil on canvas
406mm x 508mm, 254mm x 508mm, 406mm x 508mm

Gareth Cliff is the man in the 7th portrait of Facing a Century. This triptych by the artist, Taf [Tafadzwa Mukwashi] is true Pop Art in style – a textured, impasto oil painting executed in lamp black and white over three individual box canvasses.

Gareth Cliff is a 5fm DJ, Idols Judge, the host of “The Gareth Cliff Show” and the director and partner of One on One Productions. Gareth is undoubtedly one of the most popular people in South Africa today, although he firmly maintains that the only ‘real celebrities’ are Mandela and Tutu. The choice of Pop Art in its purity for Gareth was an obvious one in the end.

Whether you agree or disagree with the opinions of the critical thinker that is Gareth Cliff, the fact remains, the debate and independent thought he encourages, and his ability to stir up Vox Populi is necessary at this crucial time in South Africa’s history. The mirror images of Gareth Cliff in his portrait are representative of the outspoken, independent and reflective thinker that he is.

Gareth Cliff’s ‘Dear Government Letter’ got a reaction from the Presidency, Mail & Guardian’s Khaya Dlanga, Ben Trovato and Carlos Amato from Times Live, and so many more. Gareth, the tall, blue-eyed African from Pretoria, has demonstrated that it is possible for individuals to make their voices heard, to demand for better leadership from the Governments they elect, but at the same time to realize that the building of a nation to greater heights is up to the nation itself.

“No single person should matter more than the next. Next time you’re about to start bitching about government (or Idols), ask yourself if you did something valuable for the country today. Not something for yourself, for the country. If you did something, you can complain all you like. If you didn’t, get off your butt and go and do something. Positive people in Africa are lining themselves up to take advantage of one of the last unsaturated global markets, rich in material resources and potential. If you’re not interested in your country, why should your country be interested in you?” – Gareth Cliff

In appreciation of all the moments (the entertaining ones, the controversial ones…) that Gareth gives the country that he clearly loves, it is a great pleasure to give him this moment in Facing a Century.
[Many thanks to Rina Broomberg.]

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