Go On A Virtual Tour Of SA’s Top Galleries And Museums

Most of South Africa’s museums and galleries have been shut since March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 crisis. But, this does not mean that you have to miss out on their fantastic exhibitions and displays. Join a virtual tour and get your dose of arts and culture from the safety of your own home!

virtual tour

Showroom Art Gallery 

Showroom Art Gallery is one of the best in Pretoria, offering the everyday person the chance to engage with and come to love local, contemporary art. The gallery features works by Adele Potgieter, Amos Langdown, Helena Wagenaar, Mies, Pieter van der Westhuizen and Munro, among others. During the national lockdown period, Showroom Art Gallery will be hosting online art exhibitions, showcasing their artists’ best work. You can browse their Facebook page for daily features and artist biographies. Looking for a new artwork to brighten up your home? Showroom Art Gallery is also offering up to 10% discounts on their best available pieces, so get bidding now!

Standard Bank Arts

The Standard Bank Art Gallery was smack bang in the middle of their first major exhibition for 2020 when COVID-19 was declared a national disaster. The Lumieres ‘d Afriques exhibition was set to bring 54 artists from around Africa to the gallery in Johannesburg. Rather than shut the exhibition down completely, the gallery responded by taking it online! You can tour the Standard Bank Art Gallery here and marvel at the work of Africa’s finest artists. Hover over a painting or sculpture that intrigues you to watch a short clip by the artist explaining their inspiration and the significance of the piece.

The Gallery has also recently introduced a new online feature – Home Studio Live. Join various Standard Bank Young Artist award winners from their home studios each week for a live, online performance. The Standard Bank Home Studio Live feature will broadcast via their Facebook page each Thursday evening at 20:00. Happy listening!

virtual tour
Standard Bank Art Gallery

Everard Read 

The Everard Read Gallery has been hard at work to bring you a number of virtual exhibitions during lockdown. Currently, the gallery has two online exhibitions to enjoy – Us, a digital exhibition in support of artists and the South African Solidarity Fund and The Portrait Show, a group exhibition on display until 02 May 2020. Visit the gallery’s website to explore these fantastic projects and to give back to the arts community and those in need. You can also follow the Everard Read on Facebook and Instagram for artist interviews and for details on upcoming virtual exhibitions.

Goodman Gallery 

One of the most recognisable art institutions in Gauteng, the Goodman Gallery has stepped up to the virtual viewing party in excellent fashion. In response to nationwide gallery closures, this world-class art house has created their very own virtual viewing room, offering art lovers four different online exhibitions to explore during the lockdown period, plus a growing archive of work to engage with post-lockdown. Once every two weeks this platform presents a new bespoke exhibition curated for dynamic online viewing, complete with audio and video clips directly from the artists and curators to accompany you on your digital journey! Check it out here.

If that wasn’t enough to keep you entertained and enlightened, join the Goodman Gallery on Facebook for live artist sit-downs and live streams from around the world. It’s a great way to stay connected with fellow art lovers and expand your knowledge on all things art-related during this period.

Goodman Gallery

Kalashnikovv Gallery

The Kalashnikovv Gallery is all about diversity, freedom of expression and innovation, which is why their response to the COVID-19 outbreak has been nothing short of inspired. The gallery have effectively opened their virtual doors to art lovers through daily social media posts, in-depth artist interviews, podcasts and virtual exhibitions! They have also pioneered various artist challenges, encouraging young, urban artists to share their work online. During these uncertain times in which many artists are struggling to find platforms for their work, support from galleries such as this can go a long way to keeping the art industry afloat.

To keep up to date with the Kalashnikovv Gallery’s latest online offerings, visit their website or follow them on Instagram. Here you can find new work by Lucy Jane Turpin (available online until 20 May 2020), Instagram takeovers by up and coming artists and much more!

Johannesburg Art Gallery

So, you’ve never visited the Johannesburg Art Gallery? Here’s your chance! JAG have partnered with Google Arts and Culture to bring you a virtual iteration of the The Evidence of Things Not Seen: Photography and Resistance exhibition. The title of this work references in part, James Baldwin’s book of the same title, speaking to the intangible but pervasive nature of identity. Using works from the JAG collection exclusively by artists of colour, this exhibition looks at the influential role photography played as a visual weapon and means to document the struggle against apartheid.

Once you have thoroughly explored this JAG collection, get out your virtual VISA and go on a tour to the world’s best museums with Google Arts & Culture. Their collection spans the globe, traversing the centuries to take you on a journey through art history. Tons of time on your hands? This is the perfect solution, so hurry up and get exploring!

virtual tour

Zeitz MOCAA

Throughout the national lockdown period, the Zeitz MOCAA museum in Cape Town has been actively promoting African art and design on their social media channels. Use the hashtag #MOCAAFromYourCouch to join in on the daily conversation and get your fill of curated content online.

The museum has also created an audio tour of their exhibition which was put on hold due to COVID-19 regulations, titled Two Together. The audio tour includes highlights on each artwork, as well as commentary from the museum’s senior curator, Storm Janse van Rensburg. Get listening here.

Norval Foundation

Another Western Cape art museum to visit from the comfort of your couch during lockdown is the Norval Foundation. This centre for arts and culture research located on the Steenberg Estate offers views of picturesque surrounds and a stunning collection of 20th and 21st century art through its virtual tour function. You can ‘visit’ the museum’s Sculpture Garden, as well as their curio shop via their website.

The Norval Foundation will also be offering daily interviews with local artists on their Facebook page. Use the hashtag #60SecondArt to learn more about the art on display at the museum and the artists behind these works.

virtual tour
Norval Foundation

Do you know of any other local museums or galleries offering virtual tours? Let us know about them!