Dismantling the Sisonke Gallery
On 17 February 2020, Justine Wintjes, Mudzunga Munzhedzi and Dimakatso Tlhoaele from the Department of Human Sciences were joined by Ntethelelo Mncwango, a volunteer from the Exhibitions Department to dismantle the Sisonke Gallery to prepare for a new exhibit. The Sisonke display was installed in August 1998 under the curatorship of Frans Prins, then Curator of Ethnology. The exhibition depicted the rich material culture of Zulu beadwork and traditional weapons. The items displayed were crafted and used between the 1890s and the mid-1990s. The first section of the display included items associated with Zulu culture, such as colourful beadwork and traditional weapons. The second half focused on items of material culture that were used and displayed during the struggle for democracy in South Africa. The items included political banners, t-shirts, caps, and posters.
The items have been removed to fumigation, as is protocol, before they are returned to the collection rooms. The team always maintains appropriate health and safety standards while handling objects and implementing conservation measures.