This month marks the 40th anniversary of the death of anti apartheid activist, Stephen Biko. On August 18, 1977 Biko and a friend were detained at a police road block in Grahamstown, South Africa. Biko was arrested for violating a banning order against him, and was taken to Walmer police station in Port Elizabeth where he was held naked and shackled in a cell. On September 6 he was transefered to room 619 at security police headquarters in the Sanlam Building in central Port Elizabeth. There, handcuffed, shackled, and chained to a grill he was interrogated for 22 hours. He was beaten so severely by one of the officers that he suffered a massive brain hemorage because of the beating. After this incident, he was forced to remain standing while shackled to a wall. On September 11, he was loaded onto a Land Rover after a doctor suggested that he be transfered to a prision hospital that was 740 miles away. Biko made that trip naked and manacled. He died alone in a cell on September 12, 1977.
I wanted to post this drawing on September 12, but was unable to complete it in time because of other commitments. I learned about Biko, like many other people, through Peter Gabriel’s moving musical eulogy to him. I had long wanted to draw a tribute to Biko, and this is it. I am very proud of this drawing and consider it one of the absolute best that I have ever produced. Read more about Biko on Wikipedia.
This week, I’m trying something different; last week, I went to see the Ai Wei Wei exhibition on Alcatraz Island; I captured my adventure using Storehouse, an app that I use to create photo journal entries with on my iPhone. Click the “Storehouse,” link and you’ll be able to read all about my excellent experience at the exhibition and the rest of my day in San Francisco.
Originally, I was going to make my post here but decided to link to my Storehouse account after I saw the published results — they’re pretty impressive for an app I must say. This has lead me to decide that all future photo journal posts will be created there and linked to from here. I’m really enjoying the benefits of all the cool technology that is at our finger tips these days. That in combination with daily artistic adventures equals photo journal entries that can’t be beat.