Mandla Sibeko introduces FNB Art Joburg
“It is an honour and privilege to present the first edition of FNB Art Joburg.
As its owner, which is the first 100% black-owned art fair in South Africa, it is a momentous chapter in which to continue to collaborate with galleries to showcase and support the best in African contemporary art and artists. It is a critical part of owning our own narrative as Africans as well as sharing those compelling stories with a broad audience.
As Joburg’s leading art fair, we’ve ushered in many exciting changes to establish a platform for distinctively top quality content. With over 250 art fairs around the world, the time had come to re-imagine and transform the local art scene. Evolving from an approach focussed on filling exhibitor space, sponsorship and the inaugural galleries now subsidise the new model. As close collaborators, they also contribute to the sustainability of the fair, which remains open and accessible but focused on a less-is-more approach.
Other important shifts include game-changing additions like the Gallery Lab incubator space and an impressive MAX section to build a unique experience.
It’s essential that we respond to the needs of the art economy, which includes bringing collectors, curators and thought leaders to debate the issues, while we network to set up new ways of working together along with growing new audiences and planning future projects.
Committed to the fair for 12 years now, First National Bank as our headline sponsor has been a robust supporter of this drive. Included in this are initiatives like the FNB Art Prize to develop and give agency to artists. We also welcome City of Joburg as an important partner in boosting investment in this particular economic and cultural hub, which is an important art destination in the country.
Everyone’s efforts help to curate a weekend of celebrating the arts and sustain a healthy market to support our artists and players who have seen enormous growth in international interest, without whom we wouldn’t have the strong local fair we’re inaugurating this year.”
– Mandla Sibeko.
Talia Ramkilawan, Untitled III, 2019. Image courtesy of SMITH & FNB Art Joburg.
Visitors of FNB Art Joburg can look forward to an exciting lineup that focuses on and around art. The much anticipated event will be highlighted by:
The MAX section will present show-stopping and monumental works, as well as never-seen-before exhibits created specifically for the fair. The section – an African first that transcends the regular art stand – showcases massive sculpture, paintings, video, large-scale installations and live performances from South Africa’s leading galleries.
The ‘Gallery Lab’ – a 600sqm incubator – will be where galleries and hybrid spaces from the continent will gather to collaborate. Curated by Banele Khoza, the founding director of BKhz and Nicole Siegenthaler, FNB Art Joburg’s fair manager, Gallery Lab will develop and nurture emerging galleries and programs, as well as a space for exploration – to test new artists, ideas and business models relevant to the contemporary African arts landscape.
The fair will take place over a bumper art weekend. Art Week – and the newly introduced, Gallery Weekend – will run concurrently with FNB Art Joburg. The art and lifestyle programme that works around the fair is an entertaining way to grow the relevance and interest in contemporary art from enthusiasts to collectors. Over four days, visitors will be connected to top cultural and commercial hubs in the Johannesburg, including the inner city, Rosebank and Sandton. With art parties, music sessions, film screenings, gallery brunches and special exhibitions to enjoy, these events will add to festivities of one of the important and exciting dates of the year in the art and culture calendar.
There will also be a compelling talks programme that mixes thought leaders and media personalities alongside art professionals to provoke meaningful conversations set around workshops, panels and informal gatherings focusing on specific professional practice topics such as artist relationships, web design, art fair applications and financial management. This programming will also cover wider and more abstract range of topics as well, offering the opportunity to delve into the needs and trends of the contemporary African creative economy.
Athi-Patra Ruga, Proposed Model of Francois Feral Benga (1906-1957), 2018. Image courtesy of WHATIFTHEWORLD & FNB Art Joburg.
Alfred Thoba, ‘1976 Riots’, signed and dated 13-8-87. Image courtesy of Kalashnikovv Gallery & FNB Art Joburg.
Get your tickets.
Ticket sales are now open. Click here.
Visit the FNB Art Joburg website here.
FNB Art Joburg will take place at the Sandton Convention Centre, Johannesburg, South Africa from 13 – 15 September 2019.