A signature BMW Young Collectors Co. event, open to a select few of South Africa’s imminent young collectors, the Franschhoek Gallery Hop was a full day of art, punctuated with culinary experiences in the idyllic Franschhoek Valley.
Nothing short of eventful, the Franschhoek Gallery Hop went beyond giving members close encounters with leaders in the contemporary art world. Instead with several private collection viewings and intimate walkabouts led by gallery directors and artists, in addition to shared meals, the Franschhoek Gallery Hop offered BMW Young Collectors Co. members a picture of what applied patronage looks like in the everyday.
Following breakfast at BMW Cape Town City, a fleet of BMWs arrived to drive members to Everard Read in Leeu Estates. There, director Emma van der Merwe welcomed guests before handing over to curator Barbara Wildenboer who curated the group show, Ex Liberis.
Contemplating the provenance of books, the show brings the work of nine South Africa-based artists together to examine the ways we engage with books and texts either as physical objects or as abstract ideas. Contributing toward the conversation, artists Bella Knemeyer, Maja Marx and Tom Cullberg shared about their process, materials and their relationships with books as objects.
Once champagne flutes were emptied, members were driven to Ebony Curated to see exhibitions New Works by Oliver Scarlin and The Point by Lisa Ringwood. After a reception of snacks and wine, assistant curator, Christina Fortune welcomed BMW Young Collectors Co. members in to see the show. Building on Scarlin’s study of falling in love, the works add to this by offering private scenes of intimacy. With the intention to highlight the fragility of existing, Ringwood display of intricately drawn fauna and flora exists between the tangible world and the place people go to in their thoughts.
Once members concluded their exchanges with the artists they made their way to Boschendal Norval Art Gallery where curator Candice Thikeson walked them through the exhibition A Strange Song. Selected from the Homestead Collection, A Strange Song comprises predominantly figurative work, rich with symbolism that speaks to themes of spirituality and transcendence.
Featuring works by Cinga Samson, Nicholas Hlobo and Cassi Namoda, the exhibition had BMW Young Collectors Co. members consumed long enough for The Werf restaurant to ready a family styled three-course meal and a plethora of wines and MCCs for them to indulge in. Sitting together at long tables, members shared the understandings, learnings and opportunities they see before them as imminent collectors.
Located where the slopes of Lion’s Head meet the Atlantic Ocean, Ellerman House was the last stop. There, members were treated to sundowners and the opportunity to see a collection that spans Irma Stern all the way to 2022 FNB Art Prize winner Dada Khanyisa. Exhibited throughout the property as well as a dedicated gallery of contemporary works, the Ellerman House art collection is as unique as it is significant. Covering two centuries, the collection took BMW Young Collectors Co. members on a journey through South Africa’s complex political and cultural history.