World Art Day on April 15, here are a number of properties that feature impressive artwork celebrating artists, cultures and heritages from around the globe:
One of South Africa’s most impressive private art collections can be found at Ellerman House, an iconic luxury hotel in Cape Town with fine art at the soul of the property and its history. With one of the most significant collections of African art, the hotel includes trailblazing BIPOC and female artists who played an important role in the history of art in South Africa. The hotel includes black pioneering artists like Gerard Sekoto, Lucas Sithole, Ephraim Ngatane and George Pemba, who began a process of cultural integration of the country’s communities of color into a unified South African art. In the Ellerman House Contemporary Gallery, an eclectic, outspoken and energetic generation of current black artists, such as Phillemon Hlugwani and Louis Maqhubela are pushing the boundaries of the ordinary in order to create work that explores relevant issues in post-modern South African society. Ellerman House also features art by contemporary and internationally recognized female South African native artists like Helen Sebidi and Senzeni Marasela. Helen Sebidi's work represents a mode of African modernist painting and sculpture, wherein she depicts her experience of having grown up and living in the South African countryside, and later her experiences as a black artist, living and working under an apartheid regime. Senzeni Marasela is a visual artist who works across different media, combining performance, photography, video, prints, textiles and embroidery in mixed-medium installations. Both Sebidi and Marasela’s work has been exhibited in South Africa and internationally from private to public collections.
Ellerman House also hosts an annual art auction event to benefit the Click Foundation. The Click Foundation focuses on addressing the South African literacy crisis through the implementation of a multi-year online English literacy program in under-privileged primary schools.
Hotel Lou Pinet
From Seurat to Matisse, generations of artists have been inspired by the natural beauty and charm of Saint-Tropez. Hotel Lou Pinet, a Maisons Pariente property, is proud to continue the artistic legacy of the region by featuring a wide collection of contemporary artists throughout the hotel, all curated personally by the Pariente family. At the entrance to Hotel Lou Pinet, an Ugo Rondinone installation greets guests with a joyful cairn, a pile of stone blocks in fluorescent colors reflecting the brightness of the French Riviera sky. Close by, the artist Armelle Benoit’s monumental, six-meter long ceramic fresco on a wall now turned into a light-hearted imaginary tale. As visitors stroll along the pool, two bronze columns by the British sculptor Toni Cragg mimic the natural lines of the landscape. Inside the hotel, the work of Alexandre Benjamin Navet is prominently featured in the Beef Bar restaurant, with a colorful mural spanning the length of the restaurant. Finally, Navet, whose work has included collaborations with Hermes, Cartier, and Bulgari among many others, worked closely with designer Charles Zana to create the colorful mural inspired by vintage postcards of Saint-Tropez.
Hotel Eden Roc
Nestled on the shores of Lake Maggiore in Ascona is Hotel Eden Roc, a charming Mediterranean-inspired resort with a private beach and yacht harbor, four outstanding restaurants, including Michelin-starred La Brezza, and a 21,528 square-foot Spa and Wellness Center. The property also boasts an extensive art collection. From the bronze lobby sculpture figures by Giuliano Pedretti, similar in style to Swiss-born Giacometti, to the paintings by the German artist Tristan, and outdoor flower murals by Arianna Testoni from Como, Italy, the dynamic artwork found around the hotel is from local, European artists and all strategically placed to match and enhance the property’s vibrant furniture and whimsical designs by Ascona native Carlo Rampazzi.
The Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa
The Saxon Hotel, Villas and Spa in Johannesburg is a highly respected patron of the arts with an inspired vision of the creative arts. The impressive art collection showcases an eclectic mix of established and emerging artists and includes art and artifacts from Africa, Europe and the East. The Saxon believes in supporting South Africa’s most promising emerging artists and takes pride in displaying the work of our established artists who have gained recognition on the local and international art scene. The The Saxon Art Collection includes 8 commissioned works from local black artist Sandile Zulu. His innovative art explores a unique African vision, with fascinating seared, singed, scorched and burnt canvases. Sandile was invited to participate in an art project at the Smithsonian National Gallery of African Art in Washington DC, and was awarded a residency at the Nirox Foundation’s prestigious arts centre to work towards this project.
Kahalari reserve Tswalu has partnered with Everard Read Gallery as a part of Tswalu’s Artist in Residence (AiR) program. Everard Read, the most well-known gallery in South Africa, has hosted a variety of exhibitions throughout the years and houses works from oil painter and Johannesburg-based Nelson Makamo and contemporary artist Bambo Sibiya, as well as plenty of others.
AiR supports South African artists by providing the opportunity to spend three months on the reserve. Unveiled earlier in the year, the artists’ space is a purpose-designed, light-filled studio with large doors that can be thrown wide to invite the landscape in, creating inspiration not quite found in the city. Proceeds from work created during their time in residence benefit the artist (50%), gallery (30%) and the Tswalu Foundation (20%), which focuses on conservation through better research. Additionally, guests of Tswalu are able to visit the Artist in Residence studio during their time there by incorporating it into game drives.
With a focus on sustainable and local goods, Singita Boutique and Galleries feature local frequently collaborates with local craftspeople and artisans to create sought-after items that echo Africa’s diverse natural landscapes, reflecting the beauty of the continent’s cultures, all while celebrating local communities. Many of the items featured in the Singita Boutique and Galleries are handmade using traditional crafting techniques and by purchasing these goods, shoppers provide secure employment to these local artists and artisans empowering of dozens of local communities across South Africa. Unique items now available include Leather Braided Bracelets, usually completed with semi-precious stones, silver, crystal or pearls and designed by South African craftswomen from the Gauteng region, Mohair and Ostrich Feather Throws, completely hand-made by 16 locally trained women-weavers from the Eastern Cape in South Africa, and Handwoven Placemats, expertly created by a community of Zulu weavers in Durban who work closely with Singita designers to develop unique designs and color palettes for each lodge that echo the distinctive style and environment of that property.