Mandela is bigger than his statues: iLIVE
No statue of Mandela has yet fully conveyed the man's great personality.
These bronze castings, for all their size and weight, can surely not be the only articles that determine his legacy.
Realism rarely conveys more than the outer appearance of a man - his inner workings and drive are often better portrayed through abstract art.
One just has to look at the portrayals of JC Smuts to understand the value of the abstract.
Smuts's character eluded many an artist, the great Jacob Epstein included. The man who most successfully captured Smuts's essence was Sydney Harper, who made a statue of the man using Table Mountain as a backdrop.
Superimposed features - such as large hands, neck and shoulders - display a power that is sadly lacking from the current portrayals of Madiba.
However, this form of abstract expression has its detractors.
The unveiling of Harper's statue in 1964 resulted in a privately commissioned statue being created.
This unimpressive statue, situated in Adderley Street, portrays Smuts as a feeble dwarf sitting on a ledge clinging to a walking stick.
Although the quality and symbolism of the Harper statue eluded Smuts's supporters, it is a worthy tribute.
Hopefully, in time, a statue of Nelson Mandela will show not only his physical features but highlight his wisdom and vision as well.