29 September  - 01 October 2017

In commemoration of the earthquake that devastated Tulbagh in 1969 and the resultant restoration of historic Church Street, artists of the Tulbagh Art Route have organised a collaborative Pop-Up Art Festival at the end of September 2017.

Church Street is arguably the most beautifully restored street in the country and provides the perfect central point for a pop-up festival with artists organising and arranging their own exhibitions at the many venues along the street and at venues and wine estates in and around Tulbagh. In these days of tightly curated art fairs that have become rather bland and alike, the "pop-up" exhibitions promise to be refreshingly spontaneous and different. Artworks will generally be affordable as there will be no exorbitant gallery commissions added to sales prices at most of the venues.

Local exhibiting artists include Susan Smuts, Tina Nel, Rochelle Beresford, Vasek Matousek, Thea Smith, Ian Simons, Jan Wolmarans, Neels Venter, Hendrik Botha Fourie, Dorette Smith, Alexander Laurean, Rosette Jordaan, Annette du Plessis and photographers Louis Vorster, Norman Collins, Sally Ings and others. Guest artists include Gerhard van Eck, Clare Menck, Susan Proctor Hume, Susan Bloemhof, Ronel Bakker, Isobel Knox, Will Alves, Lisa von Brandis, Francois Venter and others yet to be confirmed.

In addition to the various venues in and around Tulbagh, several artists will open their studios and home galleries to visitors. Vasek Matousek, Ian Simons and Tina Nel will present small happenings at their homes and various artists and craftspeople, as well as performers, will be exhibiting along with them. This is a unique opportunity for intimate and relaxed encounters with the artists in their work spaces.

The Festival kicks off on the 48th anniversary of the earthquake with an opening ceremony and exhibition at the Mission Church in Van der Stel Street on Friday evening, where local musical magician Michael Canfield will perform his original song Tulbagh Earthquake Blues. Amongst various other exhibitors and stalls, there will also be an exhibition of work created by children and staff from the Steinthal Children's Home.

Plan B will be performing at the Tulbagh Hotel on Saturday and local songstress/song writer Nicole Theron will present a Leonard Cohen Tribute concert on Saturday at the Barn on Schalkenbosch Wine Estate. We also welcome erstwhile local Les Javan, who will be performing at a location to be announced. Other local musicians can be seen busking and performing at various locations. Further attractions include a variety of classical and performance acts including acting, dance, poetry and others.

The Christo Coetzee Museum will present a group exhibition themed The Bride - a favourite motif of Coetzee's - and a subject which ties in with Tulbagh's growing reputation as popular wedding destination. Participating artists include Herman van Nazareth, Christiaan Diedericks, Aleta Michaletos, Nanette Ranger, Sandra Hanekom, Theo Paul Vorster, Brahm van Zyl, Floris van Zyl, Victor Harley, Stella Pelser, Mart Leeuwner, Ilse Mundell, Griet van der Meulen, Marinda du Toit, Michael Chomse, Berdina Ludeke, Charlotte Janse van Vuuren, Willem Fritz as well as a number of local Tulbagh artists.

Anthony's Fine Art Gallery will repeat the hugely successful Affordable Art Expo staged in 2015 and the Monbijou Gallery will exhibit selected work from the Silberberg collection. A programme of talks on topics of interest such as starting an art collection, investing in art and current trends will be offered at no cost to visitors.

The monthly Tulbagh Country Market will be held at the Victorian House, 14 Church Street on Saturday 30th. The Festival is being organised in collaboration with the Tulbagh Agricultural Show which runs from 27 to 30 September, South Africa's oldest agricultural show, cantering largely around horse riding, buggy displays, a poultry section and agricultural plant and machinery.

With so much on offer, there should be something to suit every taste at the Tulbagh Art Festival on the weekend 29 September to 1 October 2017.