Friday, 15 April 2011 09:03


Porky Hefer, Cape Town artist, designer and mind of note, offers you this Easter gift. Please do not call your orthodontist. And don't worry he's a friendly giant.


Friday, 15 April 2011 07:24


Goodness. Sowetans, Joburgers and races of all speeds and paces will be getting together on the Orlando eKhaya site in Soweto tomorrow for a shoot with Brooklyn-based artist and photographer Justin Tellian and the crew from

artatwork very happy to be part of this x-treme-sweet dream for our future.


Thursday, 17 February 2011 11:38


It is sometimes so hard to work in this sector that you feel like rather going to work in a shop and doing something you don't care about. Conversations with Georgina Thomson, who has managed Dance Umbrella since it began (and developed it into one of the most significant and certainly fantastic annual arts programmes in South Africa) have been lessons in how to turn despair into stamina. Les Perkes of artatwork says "We could not believe it when we heard that Dance Umbrella had lost its major funder, especially considering how much they got out of it, and how much more they could have got out of it if they had harnessed the project's potential to dance for them in more imaginative ways than they did. Georgina's face. Oy it was terrible." And it was terrible for a long time.

For this reason, receiving a press release from Business and Arts South Africa today - announcing their supporting grant for Dance Umbrella's new major funder Rand Merchant Bank - was an excuse for exuberant cartwheels in our office this morning. Well-deserved relief for one is a great sign for us all. "I bet you Georgina still has some headaches ," says Lesley " but we hope this means she now has the well-deserved space in her mind and heart to continue to develop the Dance Umbrella brilliantly and that it gives her some time off from the fundraising mill."

The BASA release also announces another five great projects who are to receive supporting grant funds and we are told that Dance Umbrella will run from 24th February to 6th March. That's soon. Buy a whole new outfit and tickets and when you are there, smile nice at the suits, tell them how dance makes us dream. 

Monday, 14 February 2011 15:35


Thanks to Michael Coulson and Radio Today - here's the link:



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Tuesday, 08 February 2011 11:59


After over two years in development, artist and architect Mphethi Morojele's public art lighting commission in Soweto's Orlando eKhaya precinct is finally getting ready for installation. There will be light. More on this later but in the meantime, here's an image that makes very little sense ... now. Watch this public space.

BASA is showing real leadership in the arts sector in South Africa. They do advocacy. They do encouragement. They know what they're doing. And they make manifest in an environment known for a lot of meetings. We are a bit proud of them. Now they are partnering with UNESCO to do so much-needed research into funding. Here's their release about it:

BASA’s arts research gets welcome support from UNESCO

The paucity of research into arts funding has long presented challenges to the arts- business partnerships in South Africa. Now UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions has approved a significant funding grant for an intensive research project into arts funding in the country. The grant – which has been allocated from the International Fund for Cultural Diversity - comes out of an application made by Business and Arts South Africa together with the Department of Arts and Culture's International Relations division.

The application was approved at the fourth session of UNESCO’s Intergovernmental Committee for the Protection and Promotion of the Diversity of Cultural Expressions which took place in Paris between November 29th and December 3rd 2010. It will fund a specially formulated research project aimed at establishing and developing a formal funding map and a best practice policy document for corporate funders within the arts sector. “We are thrilled with the decision by UNESCO to fund this research project and I must also thank the DAC for their ongoing support in the application,” comments Michelle Constant, Business and Arts South Africa CEO. “Over the past few years it has become increasingly clear that the arts and culture sector as well as business urgently need well-planned and expertly undertaken research in the area of funding. We are confident that the UNESCO-funded project will have a long-term positive impact on the area of business funding for arts and culture projects in South Africa,” Constant says.
Among the areas to be covered by the research project are the funding needs of the South African Arts and Culture sectors; how the latter can access – and unlock - funding and available resources as well as an examination of the framework and key areas considered when business and or public sector partners allocate funding to the arts.

Adds Constant, “The global objective of this research project will be to inform the Arts and Culture sector; strategically propose recommendations to guide and enhance funding access; and strengthen the understanding and operations of the arts sector to ensure better funding and business partnerships. “In short, we look forward to a comprehensive analysis of the arts and culture funding landscape, to support business in their ongoing and growing engagement with the arts in South Africa.”

Wednesday, 02 February 2011 18:55


Somebody out there likes us. Feels good.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011 14:19


Late in 2010, we finally got to tour Joburg Art City with the artist Mary Sibande on a topless bus. Mary spoke about her work and how it evolved. Les Perkes spoke about Joburg Art City and how long it took to get the funding and how AAW! hope to make this project happen annually. We all drank champagne while the less fortunate amongst us were on summer holidays in the traffic jam at the coast.

Tuesday, 18 January 2011 10:48


While we pitch, push, wait and wonder about paying work at the start of 2011, we try to make ourselves useful to the neighbourhood.

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