Opening Night of Zeitz MOCAA – Linda Pampallis

The opening of the Zietz MOCAA museum in Cape Town brings an entire new status…. the jewel in our crown!  This amazing architectural feat, turning a silo into a place of wonder, plus providing room after room of magnificent art works, is a delight to visit.  I was privileged to be invited to the happy event and while mingling with industry friends enjoying the delicious canapes and wine, I loved walking around and enjoying one of my favourite subjects – art.

Athi-Patra Ruga was born in Umtata, South Africa. Currently, Ruga lives between Cape Town and Johannesburg, working across the mediums of costume, performance, video and photography.

Athi-Patra Ruga - Proposed Model for Tseko Simon Nkoli Memorial.jpg


‘His playful visual imagery draws from a diverse range of cultural references that are not limited to a specific biology, ancestral origin, or geographical location. The queer hybrid figures represented in Ruga’s work exist in a liminal world between the utopian dream and reality.’ – Zeitz MOCAA

Isaac Julien was born in London, the UK where he is currently based and is an installation artist and filmmaker.

Julien received his BA in fine-art film from the Central Saint Martins School of Art, London (1984) and completed his postdoctoral studies at Les entrepreneurs del’audiovisuel europeen, Brussels (1989). Julien has a long history of participation in educational institutions which includes, visiting lecturer at Harvard University’s Schools of Afro-American and Visual Environmental Studies, visiting professor at the Whitney Museum of American Arts in New York, research fellow at Goldsmiths College, University of London, UK, professor at the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design.

Julien also co-founded Sankofa Film and Video Collective and is a patron of the Live Art Development Agency.

‘His work has pioneered contemporary dialogue around the politics of sexuality, masculinity and cultural displacement. The works are an intersection of various forms of creative expression, taking influence from dance, painting, sculpture, theatre, film, and music.’ – Zeitz MOCAA

Kudzanai Chiurai was born in Harare, Zimbabwe where he currently lives and works.

Chiurai is a multi-disciplinary contemporary artist working in photography, drawings, film, painting, and sculpture. His artistic footprint has also stretched into the mediums of poetry, fashion, activism, publishing, and music, making him a cultural activist.

‘His work is focused on tracing the trajectory of political, economic and social conditions in his homeland from colonialism and independence, to the present day.’ – Zeitz MOCAA

Mary Sibande was born in Barberton, South Africa.

In 2004 she received a Diploma in Fine Arts from Witwatersrand Technikon, and in 2007 obtained a B-Tech degree from the University of Johannesburg.

Sibande’s career as an artist came under the spotlight with the opening of Long Live the Dead Queen at Gallery MOMO in Johannesburg, South Africa (2009), where she introduced Sophie, a life-size sculpted avatar, modelled in the artist’s own image.

Adorned in elaborate Victorian dress, Sibande makes reference to the uniform typically worn by domestic workers in South Africa.‘ – Zeitz MOCAA

For more about these and other artists, please visit

MOCAA like the other iconic art museums will attract not only every lover of contemporary art but also collectors and art dealers from around the world, and more tourism.  It is interesting to note that in the last 4 years, 70 new art galleries have been established in Cape Town! Testament to the depth of the rich diversity and tapestry that this city offers – no wonder it is the jewel in the tourism crown of South Africa.

Linda Pampallis

Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) is a public not-for-profit contemporary art museum which collects, preserves, researches, and exhibits twenty-first century art from Africa and its Diaspora; hosts international exhibitions; develops supporting educational and enrichment programs; encourages intercultural understanding; and guarantees access for all. Over one hundred galleries, spread over nine floors, are dedicated to a large cutting edge permanent collection; temporary exhibitions; and Centres for Art Education, Curatorial Excellence, Performative Practice, Photography, the Moving Image, and the Costume Institute.

Click here to view more if you’d like a first hand experience of the museum.

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