Archbishop Desmond Tutu


Original 1/1

Personally signed and dated in graphite pencil verso by the photographer.

Artists embossed stamp sealed on bottom right of the print.



Photographer, Matthew Willman over an 8 month period had requested from the offices of Archbishop Desmond Tutu for the opportunity to secure an interview and photo shoot with the Archbishop. As Willman was only 22 at the time with no support structure of notable photographic collections, securing a private audience with the Archbishop was proving hard to achieve.

Remarkably an opening in the Archbishops schedule became available and Willman 2 days before the meeting drove 2000km to Cape Town for this 20 minute opportunity. Working as a waiter at a local restaurant in Pinetown, Kwa Zulu-Natal, Willman had saved enough money to make this once in a life time trip.

What began as a strict 20 minute opportunity turned into a 90 minute time together between Willman and the Archbishop. 

Willman captured this beautiful portrait using only the window light coming in through his office windows.  This first meeting with the Archbishop marked the beginning of a formal / informal relationship where over the following 21 years Willman got to work with the Archbishop for various organisations. 

A digital scan of this portrait was made and is housed in the official archive of the Desmond & Leah Tutu Foundation in Cape Town. 

This is the only hand printed portrait of this photograph of the Archbishop. 

Archbishop Desmond Tutu formally recognised The MW Foundation Arts Trust in 2011 and worked with Willman to create a short video in support of the initiatives supported by the MW Foundation.

This portrait remains one of Willman’s most rare works as it marked the beginning of his journey to try and find Nelson Mandela.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu

Photographed August 2002

The original silver gelatin hand print 1/1 + AP

Silver Gelatin Print (Fibre base)

Photographed August 2002, Milnerton, Cape Town, South Africa

Print Size: 18’ x 12’ inch (45cm x 30cm)

Paper size: 18’ x 23.5’ inch (45cm x 60cm)

Printed full frame, original borders


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