There is little more rewarding than a weekend stroll though an excellent art gallery and then digesting the great works over a fine restaurant lunch. Johannesburg is a vibrant city with a mix of cultures, and much of the city’s best modern and historical artworks are on show at a range of galleries across the city. Many of these galleries, of course, also specialize in broader South African, African, and international works by famous artists. Here follows a collection of some of the city’s galleries for your viewing pleasure, so get out your camera and see some sights! You may also be interested in our post about 6 Great Museums in Cape Town.
1. The ABSA Gallery with around 20,000 individual artworks, including prints and sculptures, holds one of the biggest collections of its kind in the world. Throughout the year, they also host group and solo exhibitions at their downtown gallery, situated at 160 Main Street, ABSA Towers North.
2. The Johannesburg Art Gallery is the stalwart of the city’s art collections and features works from global artists like Rodin, Picasso, and Moore as well as local artists including Battiss, Pierneef, and Sekoto. The gallery offers guided tours on request and is situated on Klein Street in Joubert Park in downtown Johannesburg.
3. The Cherie de Villiers Fine Art Gallery was established in 1993 and houses sculptures and paintings by South African artists. Exhibitions regularly change and artists on display have included Joe Maseko, Tommy Motswai, Karen Fortune, Andrew Copper, and Dumisan Sibisi. They also have an online gallery for remote viewing and are situated at 136 Rosebank Mall in Cradock Avenue, Rosebank.
4. The Everard Read Art Gallery was established back in 1913 and is today one of South Africa’s leading galleries. Its exhibition rooms are purpose designed for maximum natural light, and it also includes sculptured courtyards. The Gallery exhibits leading African and international painters and sculptors, and with its strong leaning towards wildlife, it also includes a section for these artists. It is situated at 6 Jellicoe Avenue in Rosebank.
5. The Goodman Gallery was established in 1966 with a strong anti-apartheid focus and was especially active in the 1980s. Today, it is a contemporary art gallery focusing on artists from South Africa, Africa, and other African associated countries. It participates in numerous international fairs and is currently home to 40 artists including Kentridge, Geers, Jaar, and Goldblatt. They are situated at 163 Jan Smuts Avenue in Parkwood.
6. The Standard Bank Gallery, which opened in 1990, holds one of South Africa’s largest corporate and African art collections and hosts exhibitions of European and local artists. It is situated on the corner of Simmons and Frederick Streets in the Standard Bank centre.
7. Graham’s Fine Art Gallery located at 68 on Hobart, Block A, Corner of Hobart & Dover Road (Off William Nicol Drive), Bryanston, specializes in works from leading artists, including Irma Stern, Maggie Laubser, J.H Pierneef, Hugo Naudé, Gerard Sekoto, Alexis Preller, and Walter Battiss.
8. The Gallery Momo carries many South African artists on display and also regularly holds exhibitions and art fairs. It is situated at 52 7th Avenue in Parktown North.
9. Arts on Main at 264 Fox Street in downtown Johannesburg is a relatively new venue offering interaction amongst artists and has an outdoor cinema.
10. Spaza Gallery with its selection of works from Lesotho, including recycled works, decorated iron furniture, and mosaic pieces is also an option. They also run workshops and can be found at 19 Wilhelmina Street in Troyeville.