Keeping the arts going in South Africa


South Africa is in lockdown from 26 March to 16 April. To keep the arts going the First Thursdays Cape Town and Johannesburg initiative is offering suggestions of what to do at and from home, instead of the usual walks and visits to galleries and cultural attractions in each city.

 This Thursday, the first Thursday of April and the first under lockdown, it is suggesting ways to continue supporting the arts. One of these is to set aside one hour each day, between 17.00 and 19.00, to be creative at home, either alone or with family and friends via social media. 

It suggests sharing the creations with Eclectica Contemporary #ETCSharing which in turn will share them on Instagram. It also suggesting joining #21DaysOfArtSA organised Pretoria-born artist Alice Toich. In 2018 she spent time at the Florence Academy of Fine Arts, to learn from the old masters and their techniques. 

The First Thursday website has been updated to include gallery catalogues and a list of galleries that are offering online activities and virtual exhibitions. 

One of the initiatives it mentions is by the Goodman Gallery that has commissioned a limited edition of blankets by their artists. The money raised by this will go to the Witkoppen Health and Welfare clinic. The clinic offers primary health care and welfare to people in informal settlements.