Didem Doğan

Zeitz Mocaa Museum

Zeitz Mocaa South African Museum of Contemporary Art opened in 2017. Located on the V&A Waterfront, this imposing building was a 57-meter-long historical granary. The building, designed by Thomas Heatherwick, has dozens of galleries spread over nine floors; in the middle of the building there is a cylindrical cavity inside; gigantic black leaves sway gently from top to bottom (this is actually a work of art, Joel Andrianomearisoa's temporary exhibition 'Five continents of All Our Desires'). The place fascinates you as soon as you enter. There is a terrace on the top floor and a museum shop and cafe on the ground floor.

Zeitz is named after Jochen Zeitz, a German entrepreneur and businessman (who was a longtime director of Puma and is now CEO of Harley Davidson). The museum's collection includes photographs, sculptures and installations by African artists Edson Chagas, Zanele Muholi, Michele Mathison, purchased from the 2013 Venice Biennale.

Part of the museum is the Silo Hotel, the hotel with artworks in the lobby and a wonderful view from the terrace is one of Cape Town's most luxurious accommodations.

The comprehensive exhibition 'When we see us: A Century of Black Figuration in Painting', which spanned the entire floor during my visit, centered on the daily life of the Black race, is an African look at the consciousness and subjectivity of the Black race. More than two hundred works from twenty-six countries have been brought together around many themes such as 'everyday life', 'sensitivity', 'spirituality', 'entertainment', and 'victory'. Pretty impressive.

On another floor, there is another exhibition named 'Indigo waves, re-crossing the Afroasian Sea' dedicated to the Indian Ocean. It deals with the issues of diaspora and cultural belonging in this geography.

I would definitely recommend you to spare half a day for the Zeitz Mocaa Museum. The entrance fee to the museum is 230 Rand, and it is open from Tuesday to Sunday from 10 am to 6 pm.

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