Art for transformation sake
A small-time art fair with big time ambitions
The Stellenbosch art festival aims to transform itself into a culturally significant triennial by embracing African art
Stellenbosch is to get an art triennial 2020 . It’s a leap of faith by a group of mostly enterprising women, set to spin around the lofty colonial cultural cloud that has hung over this gorgeous student and wine town since its founding in 1679. The Stellenbosch Triennale 2020 will focus on contemporary art from Africa. It is configured to fit in with the increasing importance of the Cape as an international culture hub, but it also wears strong local significance. Like art biennials that take place every second year (the 58th Venice Biennale, the oldest, opens on May 11), triennials and quadrennials traditionally offer a snapshot of contemporary creativity. Originally a kind of nationalist cultural trophy expo, the modern version negotiates a rather more social and often political terrain. The envisaged Stellenbosch Triennale is being organised by the Stellenbosch Outdoor Sculpture Trust (SOST). It is a nonprofit organisation that has arranged a number of public art projects over th...