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Posted by on Jan 3, 2011 in Advertising, Design, Featured, StefanusNel | 2 comments

Blink Stefanus and 2011

This year sure started with a bang. Rapport phoned last week and asked if they could do a story about a Blink Stefanus design.

I knew Rapport has many conservative readers but I didn’t know people would get aggressive about the drawing of Paul Kruger in drag. As the hate mail came in I shared a feeling Zapiro must have felt when he drew Mohammed, or what Yuill Damaso felt when he painted a portrait of a dead Mandela. I’m amazed at how sensitive some people or a lot of people can get when you do something uncomfortable with their heroes.

OK I can understand why Muslims get emotional. I can understand why the ANC gets emotional. But I don’t get the Paul Kruger thing. I mean who was he?

Here are a few interesting facts about this ‘Afrikaner god’.

  • He believed the earth was flat.
  • He only read one book. The bible. Apparently he could recite parts of it perfectly.
  • He only had three months formal education – that’s less than Zuma.

You can read more about this intellectual giant on Wikipedia.

Anyway – 2011 is going to be a great year.

And I hope it’s a year filled with publicity – good or bad, it’s all good.

BlaBla Edit – Here’s a rough translation of the original article published in Afrikaans in Rapport. Apologies to both the original author and Stefanus if we got it badly wrong:

Former president. Paul Kruger, a Drag Queen
2011-01-01 16:41
Johannes de Villiers

First, Kruger Day’s name was changed, then people start threatening to remove the former president’s statue on Church Square in Pretoria, now artists are drawing pictures of Pres. Paul Kruger in red high heel shoes, fishnet stockings and sexy suspenders.

What must the poor guy still go through?

It would however be a mistake to consider the picture of Kruger in women’s underwear as an insult, says Stefanus Nel, one of the people behind the design now appearing on T-shirts.

“We tried playing with the idea of what Kruger would look like if he lived today,” said Nel. “And we think maybe he would have been a cross-dresser. Afterall, he did wear an earring!”

Nel has been working for a long time on a marketing project called Blink Stefanus, where he is trying to promote a logo of a red face in a helmet in different ways. As part of the project he asked artists to develop work with the logo design.

When he recently asked the artist Michelle Nursey to do something for the project she came up with the image of Kruger – complete with a Blink Stefanus logo on Kruger’s guitar (alongside logos from the website Wat Kyk Jy? and the [rock?]band Die Antwoord).

The T-shirts are sold through zefshop.com [Wat Kyk Jy’s online store.]

“Many people think these shirts are just for Afrikaans people,” says Nel, “but many other South Africans are also wearing them. Black people wear them. And many young people with open minds who are not afraid to test boundaries.

“But there will certainly be some people who will get upset by them.”

Among other T-shirts that Nel has designed are a special T-shirt for Siamese twins, one for a person with only one arm and a design for the fattest man in the world. In January he started a project to find wearers for the shirts.

Select Comments:

Michael
Former President Paul Kruger with dishnet stockings and President Zuma with a shower head – where will it end?

philipgroble
“And we think maybe he would have been a cross-dresser. Afterall, he did wear an earring!”
Thank God you’re not a mathematician Nel, with your kind of logic all the rockets would have reached the bottom of the sea. Shame, you’re simply stupid, how many “cross dressers” do you see walking around like THIS today? You’re a monkey who never learned history yet. Why don’t you be brave and try portray Mandela in the same way – coward.

Gero
If the poor guy had a tenth of Pres. Kruger’s manhood he would have another job It is a shame that Nel could stoop so low I hope no one buys from him because he belittled the Afrikaner

Henning
Agree, philipgroble

boerboel1
How about a t-shirt with Nelson Mandela in the same theme? I’ll buy a hundred!

Chuck Norris
Look, if that should happen, the ANC and COSATO would again hold marches and throw stones!

CaveatEmptor
Naspers/Rapport raped a historical Afrikaaner icon Oom Paul Kruger, Come Naspers, do the same with Steve Biko. Gandhi or Shaka.

Pete
I think it’s just as great as Gooi Mielies’ “Trailer park trash” shirts.
Come on all you sour pusses, relax your butts and wear something that at least still depicts something of the Afrikaaner. I’m enough of a man to wear a pink shirt when it is the only thing in the closet (long story…).
Go and get a shirt, and two rolls of Julias Malema toilet paper too. It’ll make you feel much better.

MyMening
Plain shame, small little man Nel, no respect for a GREAT MAN!

Stuart
I think it is the most beautiful shirt I have ever seen. I am gonna get myself a thousand.

Griffin
Here are some stats about Uncle Paul:

-He believed the earth was flat!
-It has only ever read one book – the bible.
-He has only three years of education

SaffaJoe
So what, he was more man than you could ever dream to be!

Marius Enslin
Well said Grif!
[101% support for you there my friend]

Griffin
Hello? He believed the earth was flat. I win.

2 Comments

  1. We’ll be bringing you an English translation of the Rapport article in a little while… And some of those critical comments that Stefanus mentions too…

    • As promised, the English translation of the article has been posted.

      We’re also working with Stefanus on a possible giveaway award linked to the “Paul Kruger as a Cross Dresser” image. Stay tuned for details coming soon…

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