Pretoria Art Museum

Pretoria Art Museum

An art gallery located in Arcadia, Pretoria in South Africa. The museum in Arcadia Park occupies an entire city block bounded by Park, Wessels, Schoeman and Johann Streets.

The Pretoria Art Museum was established to house the City Council of Pretoria's Art Collection, built up since the 1930s. The collection received an early windfall in 1932 when Lady Michaelis bequeathed a large number of artworks to the city council after the death of her husband, Sir Max Michaelis. The collection consisted mainly of 17th-century work of the "North Dutch school", South African works included pieces by Henk Pierneef, Pieter Wenning, Frans Oerder, Anton van Wouw and Irma Stern. The collection was originally housed in the Town Hall. As South African museums in Cape Town and Johannesburg already had good collections of 17th-, 18th- and 19th-century European art, it was decided to focus on compiling a representative collection of South African art.

Aside from these artists, work by Hugo Naude, Maggie Loubser and others was acquired. The purchase of international work was focused on more affordable graphics prints from Europe and USA. More recently there was greater emphasis on contemporary South African art and building a more representative historical collection also traditional arts and new-media. After the death of the sculptor Lucas Sithole 1994, half of his unfinished work by Haenggi Foundation was donated to the museum after documented by art historian Elza Miles. The South African collection now includes work by Gerard Sekota and Judith Mason. Since the mid-1990s, the New Signatures competition is also held at the Pretoria Art Museum.

An art museum in Pretoria.


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