In We are one team, one body, Shabangu features four figures from different walks of life, holding hands while standing under a tree, symbolising that the four figures are one spirit, with the tree as a symbol of life, keeping them together. Shabangu says of the work: “We as human beings don’t (necessarily) see a need to help others. In the Bible it is written that we are one body of Christ – we don’t need to compete with one another, as each part of the body has its own function”.
On a personal level, Shanbangu is using this work as a message. While he was working on the plate for We are one team, one body in Cape Town, Shabangu realized that many artists are too prideful, that there is too much competition between artists. Shabangu does not feel that he is in competition with other artists but would rather like to learn from, and help others. This is a continuation of Shabangu’s theme of carrying the loads of others, seen in some of his previous works.