26 September 2017

South Africa: Zeitz Mocaa - Cape Town's New Art Museum Stuns and Provokes

analysis

The past weekend saw the public opening of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa. A project unprecedented in its scale and ambition on the African continent, the museum was hailed at its opening as an "8th wonder of the world". Attracting at least as much attention as the art it houses is the museum structure itself: a spectacular edifice carved out of existing grain silos. Supporters say the Zeitz Mocaa can spearhead a glorious new era for African art. Its detractors aren't so sure. By REBECCA DAVIS.

On a blustery spring morning in Cape Town, what was once a disused industrial area next to the V&A Waterfront sang with life. The occasion: the ribbon-cutting ceremony of the Zeitz Mocaa (pronounced "zights mocka"), an art museum promising to be to Cape Town what the Tate is to London, or the Met is to New York.

Speakers at the event competed to produce ever-more hyperbolic metaphors to describe the significance of the day. "You are amongst the first to witness the writing of a new chapter in South Africa's history," V&A Waterfront board chair Elias Masilela told the assembled crowd.

Archbishop Desmond Tutu, in a rare public appearance, pretended to take...

More on This

How Cape Town's Zeitz Museum Can Be Money Spinner for City, Country

The new Zeitz Museum of Contemporary African Art (Zeitz MOCAA) in the V&A Waterfront in Cape Town will likely become… Read more »

Copyright © 2017 Daily Maverick. All rights reserved. Distributed by AllAfrica Global Media (allAfrica.com). To contact the copyright holder directly for corrections — or for permission to republish or make other authorized use of this material, click here.

AllAfrica publishes around 800 reports a day from more than 140 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.