Inclusive Love Mural Unveiled For Cape Town Pride


A striking street artwork by South African artist Elléna Lourens has been unveiled in Cape Town as the city celebrates its annual Cape Town Pride festival.

Located in the city centre, the mural – titled Embracing Openness – was commissioned by the FPS Chancellery of the Prime Minister of Belgium, in collaboration with the Consulate General of Belgium in Cape Town.

This visual depiction of love and inclusivity was revealed to the public at a ceremony on Sunday, attended by Mathias Bogaert, Consul General of Belgium in Cape Town, as well as the newly crowned Mr and Miss Cape Town Pride 2024, Wesley LeCap and Kendall Li.

“The mural is more than just a work of art, it enriches the identity of the neighbourhood, and adds a vibrant hub for interaction,” said Cape Town Pride in a statement.

The commissioning of the mural is part of Belgium’s ongoing campaign which invites societies to embrace openness and promotes a tolerant and inclusive society.

“We are extremely proud to have unveiled this incredibly creative work. The choice of a wall mural was a logical one for us because street art is a highly engaging form of art in public spaces and so it’s the ideal platform for this important message,” explained Bogaert.

Recently crowned Mr and Miss Cape Town Pride 2024, Wesley LeCap and Kendall Li, were among the guests at the unveiling ceremony (Photo: Cape Town Pride)

Lourens’ unique image embodies themes of love, unity, understanding, and acceptance. The artist’s use of her signature vibrant palette and subtle interplay of shapes are conceived to offer passersby a warm embrace and to provide them with an opportunity for a celebration of diversity and for reflection on the struggles for openness.

“For me, this commission connected strongly with my approach to art. I wanted to create something impactful yet warm, striking but not intimidating, to communicate what it feels like to embrace openness. The location means it will be visible to all celebrating Pride,” the artist expressed.

Embracing Openness is very much about all the vibrancy of our cultures, by representing the diversity in two ways, in terms of love but also by offering a diversity of perspectives,” Lourens added.

Bogaert noted that Belgium and South Africa are diversity pioneers. Last year, Belgium celebrated the twentieth anniversary of the legalisation of same-sex marriage, Belgium being the second country in the world to take this step. In the same pioneering spirit, South Africa was the first country on the continent to do the same.

Cape Town Pride, under the theme of “Out, Proud & Fabulous”, is currently underway with a series of community and cultural events leading up to the annual Pride Parade, which will take place on Saturday, the 2nd of March.

The Embracing Openness mural is located at Alfred Street, at the back of the BP station, in Green Point.

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