Nelson Mandela was born on July 18 1918, and what better way to celebrate the life of this icon than with Matthew Willman, who will be Helderberg U3A’s guest speaker, two weeks before what would have been Madiba’s 100th birthday.
Very few people would sit in a toilet cubicle for two hours for the chance to meet David Beckham, or to camp outside the home of PW Botha for three days.
Almost no one would do that just to ask if they could be taken to meet Nelson Mandela. That, however, is precisely what Matthew Willman did – and he subsequently had the privilege to serve as a commissioned photographer to Madiba for 10 years, from 2003 to 2013.
Matthew is a photographer, story-teller, documentarian and unconventional adventurer all rolled into one.
His quest to break down the barriers that define our stereotypes, stigmas, protocols and authorities have afforded him many opportunities to not only photograph the world but to engage with it.
His clients include Archbishop Desmond Tutu, former President FW De Klerk, past-US President Bill Clinton, singer songwriter Annie Lennox, Oxfam International, World Health Organisation and The European Commission.
Matthew will open a door to a world that exists beyond our lives, to include some of the very intimate and private worlds of some of the world’s most influential leaders.
Matthew has the privilege of travelling around the world speaking with diverse audiences on a range of topics that include HIV/Aids, development in Africa, leadership, documentary and photography.
He has had the privilege to represent Nelson Mandela, Oxfam International, One Young World and The National Underground Railroad Freedom Centre USA.
He uses his award-winning and notable photographic images along with his story telling ability to connect with his audiences, and goes beyond the aesthetic, allowing his audience to explore personal experiences that are introspective, heart-warming and enlightening.
Matthew’s presentation titled “A Life Less Ordinary” will take place at the Strand Town Hall, on Wednesday July 4, and will start at 10am.
His two books, Tripping over Presidents and We called him Madiba will be on sale after the presentation, at R200 each.
The door will open at 9.30am when tea and coffee will be available. For more information, call Brodwyn at 083 6040 784.