Here is all about my experience at Turbine Art Fair
On this Saturday (16th July), I visited the 4th season of ‘Turbine Art Fair 2016’ in Johannesburg, South Africa. Here, I had a chance to see and experience the thriving world of art in South Africa. A production of ‘The Forum Company’, this event has the reputation of being Johannesburg’s must attend event. Being a travel/lifestyle blogger (Indian) and an ardent lover of oil paintings, I was very keen to explore African art and see the works of some of the best Joburg’s artists under one roof. I got in touch with the organizers and the good people invited me to cover it as part of media. I am really happy that I approached them and I am grateful that they welcomed me warmly. Trust me, I came back impressed with the audacity, vision and creativity of the artists from the land that draws inspiration from its 4 000-year-old cave paintings of the San Bushmen. And Johannesburg is definitely one city which is famously known for its vibrant wall art and full-of-life murals.
TAF16 and the love for art!
TAF16, the preparations for which began in February, brought together more than 50 galleries and some of the greatest influencers in the world of art in South Africa. It was meant to be a happy and cheerful place because everyone had come together to showcase their best work and meet the art-lovers of the country. The fair not only gave a great platform to the creative folks but also inspired others to appreciate, understand and collect art in the most progressive way. No less, the place buzzed with great energy and enthusiasm. From sculpting to paintings, almost every form of art made its presence felt. Right next to the ticket counter, the selective collection of sculptures made by the competing artists were unique and super interesting. The one inspired by Ganesh was my favoirte. I was also impressed to learn that ‘Turbine Art Fair’ is conceptualized not only to sell and help the artists make profits but to strengthen the professional stake of the artists in the country and help them sustain a career in this industry.
Art is definitely one of the most beautiful forms of expression. I appreciate black and white but I am definitely more biased to the artists who use powerful palettes. Most of the times, I may not understand what the artist actually wants to convey (until its explained) but I absolutely enjoy deriving my own conclusions. In my view, one painting can have many meanings. The more keenly you observe, the more you have chances to see the depth and find the hidden and obvious. The whole point is that I enjoy art and have an eye for it. No doubt, I loved the dynamism and the artistic energy that oozed through the historic turbine hall at Newtown.
Art, Culture and Travel
For every country, art progresses with its people. Art is closely related to culture and it encompasses it in some form or the other. I say, art makes us travel too. It is through artwork that one can travel in the past, one can read and understand the essence of present and also peep into the minds of those who want to build a future of their choice. For me, this experience of visiting ‘Turbine Art Fair’ was absolutely enriching because it helped me look into the past, present and future of South Africa through the art works of new talents and established artists. Moreover, I absolutely loved looking through those paintings which showcased people, their lifestyle and the country as a whole. There were some paintings which had such beauty, grace and inventiveness, that I almost fell in love with the African creative and intellectual minds.
Creativity cannot survive within barriers and an artists should always have freedom of expression. When art speaks about the present society, it is a good sign for the country. In this art fair, I really loved the fact that there was lot of focus on contemporary African artists. Nevertheless, it was an ideal opportunity for the investors to believe in the future generation of artists of the country.
Some interesting things about Turbine Hall
Not only the art showcase was an interesting affair but also the venue was unique. Turbine Hall in an architecturally distinct and heritage-rich venue. To my surprise, it used to be a power station. Inside the hall, I was amused to see the furnace areas and other parts used very uniquely.
Turbine Hall used to be a power station in the late 1920s. To meet the growing needs, bigger power stations came into being. This power station did function but only as a back-up entity till 1970s. Later, the space was given a make-over without harming its originality. When Forum company refurbished the structure, it ensured that it preserved its historical architecture. Now the venue makes for a modern space and is considered a luxury destination for weddings, parties and events of grand scale.
I had reached the venue of the event on the second day at 11:30 a.m. and was lucky to find my way through the different sections of the three floors easily. After making the best of three hours when I was making my way back to the parking, I could see a very long queue at the ticket counter. I was happy that I made it at the right time when it was not that crowded. Overall, I would say the event was very well organized. I have just been in Jozi for last twenty days and this was my first time in Turbine Hall. Right from finding the way to the underground parking to exploring the various sections of the event, I faced no issues.
Join me on Instagram, Facebook and Twi
Subscribe to my newsletter to receive travel and food stories in your inbox!