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Esther Mahlangu brightens up New York City

2017-09-20 08:48
PHOTO: Getty Images

New York City has just gotten a whole more brighter thanks to a South African inspired mural painted in honour of the legendary artist Esther Mahlangu.
The mural which is located on Franklin street and the West Broadway Citi Bike station in Tribecca, was created by American artist Imani Shanklin Roberts and spans over a two land road and features Ndebele symbols according to the Huffington Post.

The piece which was unveiled last week in the US is reportedly part of a month-long partnership between  South African Tourism's US office, South African Airways and Citi Bike , which will see South Africa's unique art and culture taking to the streets in the 'big apple'.

"Esther Mahlangu is renowned  the world over for her unique, colorful and geometric paintings which have inspired international brands and artists of many backgrounds across the globe. Her work has also done an amazing job of showcasing our cultures and will provide New Yorkers this summer with a sight of South Africa's vibrant Ndebele culture," said Bangu Masisi, president of  president of South African Tourism's Americas Hub, during the launch.

Roberts took to Instagram to share the colourful artwork on her page. "Creating a mural in honor of an artist I've known all my life, in a city that isn't welcoming to many, feels unreal. It feels like an aligning moment many of us have when the universe cocreates with us and is in agreement with our path. To you NYC,I present Xola, (Stay in Peace) --((A South African Name I named my daughter--*Alignment*))) a piece that is representative of a feminine energy force that is all encompassing, inclusive and awe-inspiring. "

Esther Mahalngu is a South African artist from the Ndebele nation. She is known for her bold large-scale contemporary paintings that reference her Ndebele heritage. Mahlangu began painting at 10 years of age, and was taught the skill of mural painting by her mother and grandmother, following a tradition of her native South Ndebele people for females to paint the exterior of houses. It is in this cultural tradition where Mahlangu began her artistic journey.