Long known for its collection of art, much of it by local masters, the exemplary small hotel Ellerman House in Cape Town has recently opened a gallery to showcase young and upcoming South African artists. “Our guests (the majority of whom are international) go down to the gallery and take in the art, see something that they like, and take the name home with them and spread the word,” the gallery says.
And spread the word they will, if the striking giant sculpture of a man’s head by Angus Taylor at the entrance is anything to go by.
The art pieces that have been carefully selected and collected for Ellerman Contemporary come from various art galleries throughout the country and cover various styles and disciplines, which gives any person visiting the gallery a fairly good understanding of the contemporary art scene in South Africa. The gallery, which was put together over a year, was in a location impossible to get heavy machinery to. All excavations had to be done by hand. Not only did this allow them to construct an entire gallery while guests were sipping cocktails only a few yards away, completely unawares, but it also gave them a green gallery.
Some of the artists that are featured include William Kentridge, Angus Taylor, Collin Richards, Anthony Scullion, John Walters, Kevin Brand and Phillimon Hlungwane.