Writing Art History Since 2002

First Title

Art South Africa is on the move, experimental, provocative, intelligent, Art South Africa today sees itself a vehicle that celebrates Africa’s future-present. Always optimistic – even at the heart of a dark reflection – Art South Africa conjures possibility, champions dreams and tracks innovation; inspired by a world-wide transformation in communications, business models, design thinking, and art practice, Art South Africa is here to show and tell us about the positive outcomes of risk-taking. Focused on African culture, creativity and the arts in general while holding onto its core market – the visual arts – Art South Africa understands that life is meaningless without dreams, tastes hollow without love, and viewpoints pretentious if not profoundly felt. Fusing great heart with great mind proves the greatest challenge; Art South Africa delivers this vision.

Art South Africa works across multiple platforms; print, digital and online.

  • Print publication (quarterly): a space for critical reflection and debate compiled into a collectable publication; an invaluable archive on the contemporary arts in Africa.
  • Digital edition (monthly): with up-to-date news and reviews, broadening the platforms on which Art South Africa reaches it’s audience.
  • Art South Africa newsletter (weekly): provides its audience with current and exclusive information on the contemporary art scene, keeping them connected with happenings in the creative industries.
  • www.artsouthafrica.com: an integral part of constructing a new African network, linking the different elements of Art South Africa to form a creative hub connecting people across the world. · Social Media: an integrated approach providing content that talks to the vision of Art South Africa, effectively used to build its creative network.
  • Art South Africa is committed to developing the creative industries through its services, include video, digital publishing and book publishing.

Art South Africa engages its audience in a world that is up for grabs, sometimes inspiring, sometimes rueful, but always connected to its key drive as an experiment in freedom, a change agent. Lured by the nascent emergence of a new humanism – a new idea of why we work together, what we can learn from each other – Art South Africa seeks to broaden its platform and points of interface. Committed to the idea of Africa as the hub and matrix of a changing world, Art South Africa recognizes the great importance of building connections. While the digital provides the means, Art South Africa is about building people, building ideas, building cultures recreated through exchange; not forgetting its origins as a ground-breaking print publication.

“As far as Africa is concerned, colonialism is over. Apartheid is over too. Africans are now the free masters of their own destiny. This is why from an intellectual and political point of view, there is no turning away from the difficult work of freedom.” Achille Mbembe

Mbembe’s rousing proposition is one that Art South Africa supports, along with the caveat that, from an intellectual, political, and cultural viewpoint, this rousing proposition will make no sense without tackling “the difficult work of freedom.” Verb rather than noun, proposition and not statement, Art South Africa, today, is matter as the fodder for new-and-changing opinions.

What our supporters say:

Dominic Thorburn- Professor and Head of Department Rhodes University School of Art

“Importantly Art South Africa is the only publication that we can proudly take abroad and use to introduce and gain further exposure for art and artists of our country. As such it serves as valuable ambassadorial ‘cultural ammunition’ to showcase our artistic production and emergent creative industries.

I believe that they should be widely circulated internationally, as well as nationally and locally. Copies of the publication also become important reference documentation and contribute to a valuable and necessary archive. Where numerous other arts publications have withered and disappeared Art South Africa has miraculously survived – this in itself is testament to its worth and evidences its value within the sector.”

Janet StanleyLibrarian, Smithsonian National Museum of African Art

“Art South Africa, the premier contemporary art journal in South Africa, is the window on South African art for the rest of the world — and has been since its launching in 2002.

From where I sit in the U.S., I’m convinced that the wider art communities – museums & galleries, art schools & libraries, collectors, critics, artists – want to know what’s happening on the South African art scene. The feature essays in Art South Africa provide valuable viewpoints, and the exhibition reviews keep us current on younger, up-and-coming artists. Art South Africa offers a ready-made vehicle of cultural diplomacy.”

David Andrew – Associate Professor and Head division Visual arts, Wits School of the arts, University of Witwatersrand

Art South Africa’s audience is diverse and reaches accross both secondary and tertiary education levels, academic and popular readerships. It is a sought after marker of contemporary visual arts and cross-disciplinary work in South Africa (and across the African continent) by international tertiary institutions, galleries, museums and cultural organisations.

If one is looking for a barometer for contemporary visual arts and cross-disciplinary work in Africa then Art South Africa provides such an instument. Furthermore, it is a publication that has managed to sustain high levels of journalistic and design excellence and has become an acknowleged source of in-depth information in it’s field.”


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