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Nelson Mandela

2 of 3 portraits of Nelson Mandela

Nelson Mandela, by Michael Peto, June 1962 - NPG x137674 - © University of Dundee The Peto Collection

© University of Dundee The Peto Collection

Nelson Mandela

by Michael Peto
modern bromide print from original negative, June 1962
12 7/8 in. x 12 7/8 in. (326 mm x 328 mm) image size
Given by University of Dundee - Michael Peto Collection, 2013
Photographs Collection
NPG x137674


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Sitterback to top

  • Nelson Rolihlahla Mandela (1918-2013), President of South Africa; President of the African National Congress. Sitter in 3 portraits.

Artistback to top

  • Michael Peto (1908-1970), Photojournalist. Artist of 22 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.

This portraitback to top

In January 1962, Mandela left South Africa secretly using the adopted name David Motsamayi. After travelling around Africa, he visited England in June that year, to gain support for the African National Congress' struggle against the apartheid policies of the ruling National Party. Peto photographed Mandela for the Observer at the Haringey home of Oliver Tambo, with whom Mandela had established South Africa's first black legal practice. On his return to South Africa, Mandela was arrested on 5 August 1962. He served a continuous term of imprisonment for his involvement in the struggle against apartheid until 1990.

Linked publicationsback to top

Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top

Events of 1962back to top

Current affairs

After a series of by-election defeats, the prime minister, Harold MacMillan organises a drastic cabinet reshuffle, dismissing one third of his cabinet. Liberal MP Jeremy Thorpe's rye comment summed up the desperate action: 'greater love hath no man than this, than to lay down his friends for his life.' Britain suffers the 'Big Freeze' with no frost-free nights between 22nd December 1962 and 5th March 1963.

Art and science

The Beatles have their first hit with Love Me Do and release their first album Please Please Me. The new Coventry Cathedral is consecrated and creates a showcase for British artistic talent with the first performance of Benjamin Britten's War Requiem, a wall hanging by Graham Sutherland, stained glass by John Piper, and sculptures by Jacob Epstein and Elizabeth Frink.

International

The world comes to the brink of nuclear war with the Cuban Missile Crisis. In response to the USA's nuclear advantage, the USSR sent missiles to Cuba. The crisis lasted for 12 days before a deal was finally stuck between Khrushchev and Kennedy in which the Cuban missile bases were dismantled in return for the secret removal of US missiles from Turkey.

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