Rasta honours Pule with portrait

On 4 March, Rasta,  the famous artist known for controversial portraits of celebrities and high ranking government officials was at the Orange Farm Spin City to celebrate Pule Earm Motloung’s birthday and its recently won Soweto Tourism Award.

The event, aptly named the Art of Spinning, was also graced by a number of spinners from across the country who displayed their skills. Orange Farm youngsters also showcased their bicycle drifting skills at the event. Dead or alive, no South African is safe from Rasta’s brushes, the well-known Zimbabwean-born artist, real name Lebani Sirenje has painted President Cyril Ramaphosa, the late Arch Bishop Desmond Tutu, Julius Malema and Springboks’ captain – Siya Kolisi amongst others.

To pay his tribute to Motloung, Rasta painted his portrait while cars were spinning around him at the arena.

Speaking to OFN, Rasta said: “It is so hilarious, I’ve never attended an event like this before. I am nervous because of the cars moving around me while I’ll be painting. I have never been in this type of situation,”

he said. Attendees, impatiently waiting to see the final portrait, whispered Rasta’s name between themseves, impressed with his progress. “I’ve realised that people will say the portrait is perfect as I am painting, but, tomorrow when you read the tweets you will find something else, they will be saying  that the portrait doesn’t resemble the subject,” Rasta continued.

Rasta remains unfazed by the backlash over his portraits, instead he continues to do his work. “The way I create my art reveals a lot; it is a movement because, if you look at a photo from the initial sketch I created to the end, you can see that I am painting different faces throughout that journey,” he elaborated. He also clarified that he doesn’t paint to mock or create caricature’s of his subjects.

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