Norval Foundation

Building a Legacy: Out of Africa

By Alex Morrison

The Norval Foundation: South Africa's Latest Museum Opens in Cape Town

Following the arrival of the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa last year, a new private gallery and sculpture park cement Cape Town’s place on the international art map.

The Norval Foundation has been established by Louis Norval, a property investor and an art collector, who identified a lack of support for the artistic community in South Africa. “We wanted a world-class, self-sustainable art institution that can educate and enrich people’s lives,” he says. Located next to Table Mountain National Park, the site incorporates an outdoor amphitheatre, exhibition spaces and library.


The foundation’s collection includes work by 20th-century South African artists such as Cecil Skotnes and Irma Stern. Two exhibitions mark the launch, the first featuring local Modernists Edoardo Villa, Ezrom Legae and Sydney Kumalo.
The second, Pulling at Threads, concentrates on artists “from the Global South who take craft practices beyond craft traditions,” says Owen Martin, the foundation’s chief curator. Over the next two years, he hopes to expand the programme to bring more international and African artists together, “introducing a different perspective to some of the dominant narratives about Modernism.”

The Norval Foundation, Cape Town, opening on 28 April.

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