8 things not to miss at RMB Turbine Art Fair 2018

Now in its sixth year RMB Turbine Art Fair (July 12-15) has become an annual city fixture attracting thousands to downtown Joburg over three wintry days. If ever you had dreams of collecting art this is a great place to start, with almost 50 galleries and artist studios presenting works focused on affordable and investment-worthy art with a ceiling price of R50,000. Organised by The Forum Company, known for its remarkable events and venues, the art fair is also a fun social event with a packed programme of talks, special exhibitions and installations all complemented by a superb venue – the spectacular Turbine Hall in Newtown – and imaginative gourmet fare courtesy of the organisers The Forum Company who are famed for their memorable events and delicious food.

In addition to the stunning selection of artworks on sale from participating galleries, here’s our pick of seven highlights of this year’s Turbine Art Fair programme that you won’t want to miss:

1. Is There Still Life? The Work of Irma Stern

Drawn from both private and public collections from around the country, this exceptional exhibition organised by leading auction house Strauss & Co is dedicated to the still life work of renowned South African painter Irma Stern, South Africa’s bestselling artist on the secondary market. Featuring some of Stern’s most famous memorable paintings such as her vividly coloured 1947 study Dahlias, this exhibition promises to be a major hit.

The Still Life exhibition is also accompanied by an exciting collection of works in different media that have been inspired by Irma Stern’s work created as part of a special project that saw the auction house go out to universities, a design school and Artist Proof Studios to inspire new treatments of still lifes in a variety of artistic mediums. The works are for sale and make great collectables.

2. Strauss & Co Online Auction exhibtion

Coinciding with the annual RMB Turbine Art Fair at Turbine Hall (July 12-15) works from Strauss & Co’s Online Auction will also be on display at the fair. Highlights of the July Online Auction – which is open for bids until Mon July 16 – include prints, linocuts and drawings on paper by the likes of William Kentridge, Sam Nhlengethwa, Norman Catherine, Peter Clarke, Walter Battiss and Cecil Skotnes. You can browse and bid for the works in the Strauss & Co online auction here. Reserve estimates start from as low as R2,000.

3. This Landscape. This Landscape! The Quintessential Metaphor of Life by David Koloane 

Acclaimed artist and co-founder of Bag Factory Artist Studios David Koloane teams up with art studio LL Editions and curator Ruzy Rusik for a retrospective of his incredible 80-year long art career.

4. The Graduate Exhibition 

An exhibition specially curated for the event that showcases some of the best post-graduate painting and photography from fine arts departments across South Africa.

“The purpose of the Turbine Art Fair is to develop young artists and grow the market for African art. RMB shares our vision and this partnership will help to elevate art collecting across a wider market, strengthening the greater creative economy,” says Glynis Hyslop, founder of Turbine Art Fair and MD of @theforumcompany. @candicebermangallery will be exhibiting Daniel Stompie Selibe's work, among other incredible talents at RMB Turbine Art Fair this year. Featured artwork | Daniel Stompie Selibe | HIT THE ROAD JACK, 2018 Mixed Media on Paper 1160x770mm . . . #rmbturbineartfair #artfestival #contemporaryart #joburgart #joburgartfair #candiceberman #danielstompieselibe #musicart #mixedmedia #candicebermangallery #contemporaryart #bermancontemporary #modernart #hittheroadjack

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5. RMB Talent Unlocked

A showcase of new works by exciting young, up-and-coming South African artists curated by 2017 ASEF Visual Artist and Market Photo Workshop alumni photographer Fulufhelo Mobadi.

@turbineartfair has been introduced to incredibly talented artists brought to us by the galleries. In 2017 we were introduced to the talented @claudiagurwitz by @solostudiosrk. “I am drawn towards the strength and potency that plant forms hold. My paintings are not botanical surveys, nor intended to be photorealistic, or even entirely representational. The subject matter is almost irrelevant. My painting is about form and structure, about harmony and tension. It’s about rhythm, contrasts and vitality. Each artwork taps into the coexistence and interdependence of nature’s male and female forces.”- Claudia Gurwitz Featured artwork by Claudia Gurwitz | Don't be a Wallflower #5 – Oil on Canvas – 70cm x 70cm . . . . #solostudios #artinspiration #stilllife #stilllifeatrmbturbineartfair #rmbturbineartfair #rmb #turbinehall #claudiagurwitz #articon #southafricanart #contemporaryart #modernstilllife #modernart

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6. Art Talks and walkabouts sponsored by RMB Private Bank

Taking place under the theme Think, this year’s Art Talks topics include learning how to build an art collection that appreciates over time, panel discussions with artists who turned their passions into careers and how to identify promising artists. Highlights of the TAF 2018 talks programme include a discussion on buying investment art with  art historian Wilhelm van Rensburg from the Strauss & Co auction house and fun walkabouts of the fair’s exhibiting galleries by prominent personalities including the ‘Think fun – Art that tickles my fancy’ walkabout with comedian John Vlismas. Check out the 2018 Art Talks programme here.

7. TAF for kids

On Saturday and Sunday the fair hosts a special kids area where the little ones can get busy creating their own masterpieces. There are also artist-led walkabouts for children taking place at 11:00 and 12:15 (for children aged 6-11 and for those aged 12 and upwards).

8. Fabulous food and wine from The Forum Company

In addition to all the fabulous art on display, the annual Turbine Art Fair is also a fab event for foodies with the innovative The Forum Company always striving to bring art to the dinner plate. You’ll find a cafe area upstairs in the main hall as well as food trucks, wine and live entertainment in the huge enclosed terrace at the back of the building.

RMB Turbine Art Fair 2018 is open:

Thu July 12 18:00-21:00, First Access cocktail party (tickets will not be sold at the door for the opening night and must be purchased online).
Fri July 13
Sat July 14
Sun July 15

Tickets R100 (R120 at the door), kids under 12 R50 (R80 at the door), students R80 (R100 at the door). First Access cocktail party R800. Take note that RMB Turbine Art Fair is a completely cashless environment, payments can be made by card only. Book your tickets online here.

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