Africa’s biggest modern art gallery opens in Cape Town
Africa’s largest gallery for contemporary art from the continent and its diaspora has opened in the South African city of Cape Town.
The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz Mocaa) is set inside old grain silos on the V&A Waterfront.
The building has been converted by UK architect Thomas Heatherwick into a maze of rooms with bulbous windows.
Visitors are greeted by a giant flying dragon made of rubber, created by South African artist Nicholas Hlobo.
Much of the work on display comes from the private collection of the museum’s patron, former Puma chief executive Jochen Zeitz, who is German.
“Africans need to come on board,” he says. “It’s not my museum or the Waterfront’s – it’s for Africa.”
One of the biggest draws is a selection of work by the Ghanaian sculptor El Anatsui, who won the prestigious Praemium Imperiale International Arts Award last week.
Critics say the collection is missing some important African artists.
“The absence of works by Cameroonians Samuel Fosso, Pascale Martine Tayou and Barthélémy Toguo, as well as South Africans Robin Rhode, Tracey Rose and Berni Searle – all esteemed, pace-setting artists – hints at crucial blind spots,” says one reviewer in South Africa’s Sunday Times newspaper.
Entrance to the public, not-for-profit museum will be free for African passport holders at certain times of the week.