It was raining on the 10th of December, 2013, the day of Nelson Mandela’s memorial at the FNB Stadium in Soweto. Throngs of people queued up to pay their final respects to a man whose legacy as one of the most instrumental figures in South Africa’s anti-apartheid struggle continually swings back and forth between a militant ‘any means necessary’ freedom fighter, to a docile pro-democracy grandpa-like activist - all depending on whose doing the reporting. And thus, depending on what sector of the populace you represent, you’ll take the bits and pieces of Madiba that best suit your memory of him.
Present at the memorial were mourners from all walks of life - some young, some old, some who preferred the MK co-founder and boxing enthusiast, and some who saw him as their ticket into the mythical “post-racialism” that exists in the so-called ‘Rainbow nation’. There to capture some of these faces was South African photographer Jono Wood, on a personal mission to capture “a different look and feel to main stream media.”
And indeed, he did.