WELGEMEEND August Art Month, from the 5th to the 31st, is an annual event that promotes the appreciation of art and culture in the greater Cape Town community and is hosted by collectors Frank and Lizelle Kilbourn and auction house Strauss & Co, in collaboration with the Friends of Welgemeend. The month-long celebration of the visual arts is hosted in the historic manor house of Welgemeend and involves a themed art exhibition featuring works from private collections. The convivial programme features walkabouts, lectures and other social events.
This year’s exhibition is titled Homage: Erken/Verken and pays homage to the founders of Die Kunskamer, a groundbreaking Cape Town art gallery established in 1971 by art market pioneer Louis Schachat and his wife Charlotte. Louis, or “Oom Louis” as he was affectionately known, always emphasised that the decision to buy any artwork should be based on the buyer’s affection for a particular painting or sculpture, not for its perceived investment value. He passed away in 2013. Charlotte has kindly agreed to the collaboration for 2022 August Art Month and will play an active role by lending key art works to the exhibition and providing valuable information and archival material about Die Kunskamer and the artists it represented over the years.
Louis and Charlotte, through Die Kunskamer, created a platform for the marketing and sale of works by the very best South African artists of their time. In addition, they regarded it as their duty to enlighten the public about the value and the beauty of works of developing artists. Many of these artists became well-known and are today recognised as being amongst the top artists our country has produced.
Works by, among others, Irma Stern, J. H. Pierneef, Alexis Preller, Deborah Poynton, Kenneth Bakker and many others, will be on display.