5 ways to be patriotic about South African art

The South African art scene is still quite new compared to other countries, but we have some incredible talent. With the economy as it is, the arts is usually the industry that suffers, since people aren’t as likely to buy art if they are struggling to pay their bills. However, if we want art to grow in this country, we need to be patriotic. There is so much talent right here on South African soil. Here are five ways you can support the South African art scene.

  1. Put your money where your mouth is
    If you want to be supportive of the art scene, there is no better way than to purchase artwork. There are so many ways to do this, whether it’s browsing art galleries or attending art auctions in South Africa. There is an abundance of art galleries in this country – over 100 in Cape Town alone – and art auctions are easy to find just by doing a quick Google search. Paintings and prints are beautiful to buy, but artisan products like ceramics are also great purchases. Buy something you love, there’s no use in buying something you hate.
  2. Try and support independents first
    If you’re trying to decide what to do on the weekends, perhaps instead of attending a blockbuster movie, try and go to the theatre or to an indie film. You will be supporting all the artists, directors, actors and crew who worked on the production, and help them continue to make more.
  3. Buy originals rather than prints
    If you really want to support an artist you love, you can do no better than purchasing an original piece. It may be more pricey, but it will be yours and can be considered an investment, especially if the artist gains more recognition. If you can’t afford a large piece, invest in small pen and ink drawings, water colours and sketches.
  4. Support South African authors
    It’s tempting to only read books from big names from the John Grishams to the JK Rowlings, but we have some amazingly talented local authors. They can only keep writing if people purchase their books, so try and get in the habit of buying books written by South Africans. Bargain books are all well and good, but the author won’t get much royalties on them. You can encourage local authors by attending book signings and events and buying directly from the author.

Art and creativity are what makes us human. Everyone needs some beauty in their lives, so get out there and discover a local artist who will bring joy into your life.