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Zimbabwe: Twitter reacts to President Mugabe statue

Acclaimed Zimbabwean sculptor Dominic Benhura is getting a lot of stick from Zimbabweans on social media for a statue of President Robert Mugabe, which is being criticised as a shoddy job. What’s your impression of the statue?

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Acclaimed Zimbabwean sculptor Dominic Benhura is getting a lot of stick from Zimbabweans on social media for a statue of President Robert Mugabe, which is being criticised and ridiculed as substandard, and a mockery of Mugabe.

President Mugabe was quoted in local reports heaping praise on the statue. Benhura is an artist who is well known and respected across the world and has exhibited his art at various galleries around the globe, winning numerous accolades for his work.

However, Benhura’s latest piece, the almost 4 metre tall statue of President Mugabe has not won the hearts of Zimbabweans, instead it has continued to draw ridicule from numerous social media users.

The statue was unveiled last week at the State House, and shows Mugabe with his right arm raised aloft, fist clenched, a typical revolutionary symbol of defiance and comradeship.

Benhura has defended the statue and his style of art, telling the Herald that the “sculpture was never meant to look exactly as the President’s image. I do not do exact figures. Some artists do exact figures, but I do something that makes my work different”.

Despite the artist’s explanation and contextualisation of his particular style, social media has been unrelenting, criticising the statue as ugly.

Twitter reactions:

https://twitter.com/AFRICANlSM/status/774710926528356353