National Geographic photojournalist Pablo Corral Vega recently visited South Africa to embark on an iconic journey tracing the heroic life of a global hero, Nelson Mandela.
National Geographic Channel and South Africa Tourism collaborated to create a commissioned 90” vignette, capturing Vega’s journey around South Africa. The campaign will launch in April 2015 on National Geographic Channel, airing in South African Tourism’s key markets across North America, Asia-Pacific, Latin America and Europe, with an estimated audience of over 300 million. This video is part of the NGC ‘Through The Lens’ series, featuring vignettes by a portfolio of top National Geographic photographers including David Doubilet, Mattias Klum, Joel Sartore and Stephen Alvarez.
With Mandela as his focus, the world-renowned politician, philanthropist and photojournalist aimed to understand more about this incredible individual’s life, and his long walk to freedom and to the office of President of South Africa.
The photojournalist’s journey started in the rolling green hills of the Eastern Cape in Qunu, where Mandela spent his early childhood tending herds as a cattle-boy. Pablo described the people he met there as ‘gentle and kind’, and by documenting their lives he was able to trace back a stronger connection to Mandela’s early identity.
Pablo also visited many of the memorial sites and monuments that grace varied locations throughout South Africa, from the Union Buildings in Pretoria to Robben Island off the coast of Cape Town. These historic landmarks continue to draw thousands of visitors from all over the world, indicating Mandela’s international acclaim for his activism and how his legacy continues to inspire those far beyond South Africa’s borders. The NGC-South Africa Tourism vignette highlights the core of Vega’s photojournalism centering around the ‘human spirit’ which according to Vega, the South African people keenly manifest the Mandela legacy and idealism.
Deborah Armstrong, EVP Media Sales & Brand Partnerships, FOX International Channels, noted that “We are truly honoured to partner with South African Tourism in sharing this inspirational content that celebrates the life and times of such an incredible human being.
“Nelson Mandela single-handedly put South Africa on the map for billions of people around the world. Whenever they meet a South African in their country, without a doubt, the first word they utter is ‘Mandela’. This is because Madiba is not only a hero for all South Africans, forever changing the course of our combined history, but because his incredible leadership ability, compassion and vision made him a hero for the whole world, earning him an iconic status in every country on earth.
Mandela opened up our beautiful country, once a pariah state, to the rest of the world and his name alone has attracted millions of tourists wanting to walk in his footsteps to South Africa every year. Through this vignette, we know that many people around the world will be encouraged and inspired to come to South Africa to experience Mandela’s life journey, our rich history and the warm welcome of our people”, says South African Tourism Chief Executive Officer, Mr Thulani Nzima.
To view the Mandela vignette and the entire ‘Through the Lens’ series please visit www.throughthelens.tv.