Exhibition Venues at Spier


Yellowwoods Art curates a rotating selection of artworks that are displayed in Spier’s meticulously restored Cape Dutch buildings, conferencing rooms, indoor and outdoor spaces of the Spier Hotel. Each venue, treated as an exhibition space, is dedicated to artists of both emerging and recognised talent. Visitors will encounter works ranging from accomplished artists such as Marco Cianfanelli, to rising artists like Ricky Dyaloyi.

Below is a list of publically accessible exhibition spaces at Spier featuring certain artists at particular times.

Spier Wine Tasting Centre

The artworks exhibited here showcase two of Yellowwoods Art’s collaborative projects -  a partnership with printmaking studio Warren Editions, and beaded artworks created in collaboration with Qubeka.

Master printer Zhané Warren worked with a number of pioneering artists on a series of technically and dimensionally daring relief prints, each series printed as a limited edition. Characterised by a bold layering of form and colour, these prints, worked in relief, are a far cry from the monochromatic linocuts often associated with the medium.

Necessitating the studio’s recent acquisition of a new and giant-sized press - fondly dubbed the She Monster - the project has stretched both artists and printers, but in the process reaffirmed the studio’s commitment to print as an evolving, ever-surprising medium of contemporary art practice. The artists represented here include Christo Basson, Jean de Wet, Connor Cullinan, Vulindlela Nyoni, Katherine Bull and Matty Roodt, and these artworks are available for sale to the public.

The circular beaded works by Qubeka include the designs of artists Liza Grobler, Frans Smit and Lizette Chirrime.

Spier Hotel

Existing and new work selected for the Spier Hotel consists of a carefully chosen collection of both emerging and established African artists; all the artworks chosen for the hotel incorporate and explore the following themes in keeping with Spier’s ethos: sustainability, heritage, aspiration and identity.

In much of the work, a strong African identity is evident – from Patrick Makumbe’s colourful and emotive pastel portrait scenes, through to David Lurie’s photographic excursions into the urbanization of Cape Town to document the marginalized who dwell there. Through various artworks, definitions of identity are questioned and stereotypes challenged.

Justin Fiske is featured in the Spier Hotel Restaurant area. His site-specific, kinetic sculpture entitled ‘Furling’ (2010) is suspended on invisible strings from the rafters, occupies the space high above the doors leading into the dining room.

A display of Creative Blocks is featured in the Hotel foyer, with Malcolm Dare's beautiful photographic portraits of prolific Creative Block artists hanging in the adjacent spaces.

Old Kitchen

The recently restored Old Kitchen adjoining Spier's historic Werf is the latest structure to be added to Spier's exhibition spaces. Dated 1812, the heritage building forms part of Spier's bigger vision for re-establishing the Werf – the historical farmyard of the property.

As a standalone landmark it serves as a meaningful reminder of our colonial history, a testament to a history of work spaces and the related dynamics and divisions between people. Exhibiting artworks in such a space sparks immediate conversations - between the pieces and the space they inhabit, and it is intended to encourage the same between visitors, art patrons and artists.

The Old Kitchen is currently home to 'Decor-Z', a collaborative exhibition curated by internationally acclaimed artist Liza Grobler, and featuring the work of Marlise Keith, Jeanne Hoffman, Mark Rautenbach, Barbara Wildenboer and Daniella Mooney.

Old Wine Cellar

The Old Wine Cellar hosts exhibitions from time-to-time that are curated by Yellowwoods Art. Central to the curatorial mission is to encourage an enriching understanding and enjoyment of the visual arts among staff members at Spier, while being accessible to a public that ranges from international visitors to local scholars.

To date, the exhibition programme has included ‘Art & Violence’ (2009), a curated survey exhibition that examined the close relationship between art and violence in a Southern African context including the works of Hanneke Benade, Conrad Botes, Pieter Hugo, Goncalo Mabunda, Judith Mason, Peet Pienaar, Christopher Slack and Diane Victor. A second exhibition, titled ‘Art & Architecture’ (2009) explored how art is influenced and affected by architecture and included works by Justin Fiske, Michael Subotzky, Guy Tillim and Billie Zangewa. The third exhibition, (not curated by Yellowwoods Art) ‘FORWARD>MARCH’ (2009) was a group exhibition that used as its starting point works of resistance to militarisation from the End Conscription Campaign era. Lastly, the extraordinary solo exhibition, ‘Transitions’ (2009 –2010) by Paul Emmanuel, went on to tour international museums including the Smithsonian National Museum of African Art in Washington and the Foundation Kunstraum Sylt Quelle in Germany.

The Manor House and Conference Centre

‘Celebration’(2011) by Kagiso Pat Mautloa forms a proud acquisition for the Spier Collection. This large painting can be found on the left wall as one enters the main hall of the Conference Centre.

Considered by many as a “contemporary master painter”, Mautloa (born: 1952) studied art at various schools and art centres before obtaining a Diploma in Fine Art from the prestigious ELC Art Centre at Rorke’s Drift, Natal in 1979. He has participated in numerous significant shows including: “Unlocked” – Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg (1994); Venice Biennale, Italy (1995); “Kagiso in Johannesburg” – Goodman Gallery, Johannesburg (1999); “Tracking” – Goodman Gallery, Jhb (2003).

Mautloa’s work avoids a concise definition and description as he makes use of such wide range of media and works within a variety of styles.  His oeuvre includes photography, lithography, drawing, installation, collage and painting. His paintings fluctuate between total abstraction and a hybrid style that makes use of both abstract and figurative elements. The human figure is often explored within the framework of various other elements. He is fond of incorporating found objects into his paintings, and thus enriching the surface texture.  These works remind one of Synthetic Cubism, displaying a preoccupation with form and structure.

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