Fred Brownell and the creation of the South African flag

first_imgBrand South Africa’s new Play Your Part TV series, to be aired on SABC2 from Sunday 15 June at 9pm, features an interview with Fred Brownell, heraldry expert and designer of South Africa’s beloved six-coloured flag. We bring you the remarkable story of Brownell’s development of the flag back in early 1994, when the country was teetering between civil war and – the ultimate outcome – a nation united under one flag.Fred Brownell, the man who designed South Africa’s national flag, with Kabelo Mabalane, kwaito star and the host of Brand South Africa’s Play Your Part TV series, in a still from the show. (Image: Brand South Africa)The remarkable story of heraldry expert Fred Brownell’s last-minute development of South Africa’s six-colour flag starts back in early 1994, when the country was teetering between civil war and – the ultimate outcome – a nation united under one flag.He says there is no copyright on the way people perceive their flag. The public was entitled to attach, as it did, whatever meaning it liked to the colours, and to maintain, as it still often does, that the blue ought to be on top “for the sky”. “What mattered,” he says, “was that the flag would find its way into the hearts and minds of the population at large, and became a unifying symbol.”Watch the preview of the first episode of Brand South Africa’s TV series, Play Your Part, airing on SABC2 on 15 June at 9pm: Flying the flag at Mangaung Stadium in Bloemfontein, Free State, during South Africa’s 2010 Fifa World Cup. (Image: Brand South Africa) One percent inspiration, 99% perspiration. Fred Brownell’s earliest thoughts for South Africa’s new national flag were sketched on the back of a programme during a slow evening at the 1993 International Congress of Vexillogy in Zurich, Switzerland. (Image: Flying the Flag) Evolution in progress: Fred Brownell’s initial Zurich design, based on the idea of the convergence of South Africa’s peoples into one nation, was tweaked and changed until everyone was either satisfied or too tired to argue any more. (Image: Flying the Flag) “Hope you voted” by Flickr user Darryn van der Walt The casket of Nelson Mandela draped in the South African flag during the legendary statesman’s funeral in Qunu, Eastern Cape, in December 2013. (Image: GCIS) Watch Wavin’ Flag by K’Naan, the official song of South Africa’s 2010 Fifa World Cup: Compiled by Mary Alexanderlast_img

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