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Arts and Culture


An exhibition by Nelson Mandela University photographer, in colaboration with the Department of arts, culture and heritage and the school of music art and design.  Was hosted at the Birdstreet Arts Gallery on 16 August 2017.

The exhibition depicted the fees must fall movement through the lives f eight students who struggled to gain access to the university because of financial and other challenges. The University`s photographer leonette Bower was approached by Vice Chancellor Derrick Swartz in 2015 to do a documentary about the challenges faced by students regarding access to highert education. The exhibition was titled story of my life and documented the livving conditions of eight white, coloured and black students from the University. She liased with the University`s financial aid and student housing departments for assistance with finding students who might want to share their experiences.

According to Bower the project initially covered five students she photographed and compiled a booklet which formed part of the requirements for her B-Tech photography qualification. Bower then decided not to end there so she continued and added three more students to the five which made it eight. She said to PE Herald repoters that "This project opened her eyes to the different realities faced by students on a day to day basis and these experiences changed her mindset into being more understanding of the motives beehind the fees must fall movement. The #storyofmylife exhibition opened on 16 August 2017 at the birdstreet art gallery and will run until 1 September 2017. Gallery hours are 9H30 am to 3pm on weekdays.