WORDS Gina Dionisio
What to see Investec Cape Town Art Fair 2024 – the largest contemporary art fair in Africa.
A convergence of global and local creativity, this year’s Investec Cape Town Art Fair (ICTAF) promises an eclectic tapestry of exhibitions, discussions, and experiences that transcend boundaries. Taking place from 16th – 18th February 2024 at the Cape Town International Convention Centre (CTICC), the much-anticipated 11th edition of ICTAF invites patrons to immerse themselves in a whirlwind of cultural exploration.
Embracing the theme of ‘Unbound’, the curated sections of the 2024 fair strive to liberate art from constrictive narratives, amplifying diverse voices and igniting new realms of imagination.
Fabulous first-time features will join the lineup of favourite talks, walkabouts, parties, tours and opportunities to explore the Mother City’s art ecosystem, including the Yawa Off White Capsule and Lukhanyo Mdingi collab (the first of its kind at the fair), the brand-new focus on ceramics and GENERATIONS, a debut section featuring cross-generational dialogues between artists. For the first time, five emerging artists selected from twenty artists who have been through the City of Cape Town’s Emerging Artists Programme will be represented by a dedicated booth curated by curator Igsaan Martin. Additionally, Bo Kaap is set to bind the city with an activation which speaks to the theme of Unbound.
Here are the unmissable highlights that define this year’s spectacle, each a testament to the fair’s evolution and commitment to pushing artistic boundaries:
Get ready to be mesmerised by the ancient art of ceramics at the Investec Cape Town Art Fair. ‘Cabinet|Clay’ brings together a stellar lineup of artists, from the esteemed Ian Garrett to contemporary feminist voice Frances Goodman, each shaping clay into narratives that resonate with modernity. Dive into the world of Madoda Fani, Chuma Maweni, and Clive Sithole, as they redefine tradition with every stroke. Join the conversation with Michal Korycki and other visionaries as they explore clay’s boundless possibilities.
A New GENERATION
Witness the birth of intergenerational dialogue at this year’s fair with Generations. Curators Natasha Becker and Amogelang Maledu orchestrate a symphony of voices, from the iconic Esther Mahlangu to emerging talents like Bonolo Kavula. Explore the intersections of past and present as artists from Rorke’s Drift engage with contemporary visionaries, forging connections that transcend time.
What’s the ALTernative?
Step into the unconventional realm of ALT and witness art in its rawest form. From 16 Lerotholi to Untitled, delve into projects that defy convention and redefine artistic expression. Explore the diverse, innovative, and alternative universe that pulsates within and around the continent, breaking free from traditional paradigms.
Off the WALL
Embark on a journey through South African modernism with WALL. From the revolutionary palettes of Gregoire Boonzaier to the mystical icons of Larry Scully, experience a kaleidoscope of artistic innovation. Let the narratives of Sam Nhelengethwa, Sydney Kumalo, and Mary Sibanda weave a tapestry of South Africa’s rich artistic heritage.
Experience a grand convergence of global creativity at the Investec Cape Town Art Fair. From Romina Ressia to Yinka Shonibare, artists from 50 countries unite under one roof, transcending borders and ideologies. Immerse yourself in a melting pot of emerging trends and cultural insights, shaping the future of contemporary art.
It’s a Material World
Explore the breathtaking world of material-driven artistry at the fair. From fabric and textiles to sculpted rubber, artists like Nicholas Hlobo and Usha Seejarim redefine creativity with every stroke. Discover the unexpected beauty in mundane objects and unravel the unique methodologies that fuel their artistic vision.
Fashion Forward + Retail Therapy
Indulge in a sensory extravaganza with Black Coffee, Themba, and Arie Fabian’s fashion platform, Yawa. From limited-edition capsules to exclusive artist ranges, experience artistry in every stitch. Dive into the world of Lukhanyo Mdingi and Virgil Abloh, where creativity knows no bounds.
Through the Lens: Capturing the Essence of Contemporary Africa
Witness the transformative power of photography in shaping contemporary African art. From Jürgen Schadeberg to Sarfo Emmanuel Annor, explore the myriad perspectives that define our cultural landscape. Let the lens of innovation guide you through a world where tradition meets modernity.
Cultural Connections: Nurturing Artistic Ecosystems
Celebrate the vibrant tapestry of Cape Town’s cultural institutions at the fair. From the Norval Foundation to the Lalela Project, witness the transformative impact of art on society. Engage with educational projects and exhibitions that foster cross-cultural understanding and ignite creative innovation.
Bo-Kaap and Beyond
Immerse yourself in the historic charm of Bo-Kaap with captivating pop-up exhibitions and performances. Explore the city’s rich artistic heritage through the lens of international galleries and local talents. Join the reimagining of Cape Town’s history and embark on a journey of cultural discovery.
Talks and Walks
Engage in thought-provoking conversations and guided walkabouts at the fair. From debates to presentations, delve into the heart of contemporary art with artists, curators, and collectors. Navigate the diverse offerings of the fair and gain invaluable insights into the artists and artworks on display.
The Walkabouts Programme
The Walkabouts Programme, curated by Art School Africa, will feature walkabouts by Dr Mariella Franzoni (curator of Tomorrows/ Today), Sean O’Toole (curator of SOLO), Phokeng Setai and Alex Richards (co-founders of Exhibition Match), Natasha Becker and Amogelang Maledu (co-curators of the new GENERATIONS section), Alice Toich (Artist), Max Melvill (Creative), Karabo Morule (Entrepreneur) and Andrew Lamprecht (Curator).
Investec Cape Town Art Fair takes place from 16th-18th February 2024 at the CTICC and around the city. For more info and tickets, visit investeccapetownartfair.co.za.