Art in the Park

The long-standing Nashua Art in the Park will be taking place in Alexandra Park, Pietermaritzburg on the banks of the Umsunduzi River where avenues of plane trees create a picture perfect setting.

Some 55 artists from throughout South Africa and Southern Africa have been carefully chosen to exhibit their works in a variety of medium. In addition, entertainment, music, night-time fires and wonderful food and drink add to the rich autumn atmosphere of this event.

Dumisani Mhlongo, director of Msunduzi Pietermaritzburg Tourism said  the week-long art exhibition will remain at Botanical Gardens next year but with a focus of expanding the event to accommodate everyone.  Msunduzi Pietermaritzburg Tourism is planning to make it into a family affair and cater for the needs of the whole family. Children’s activities will include a jumping castle,  a live entertainment arena and food court, as done in the previous years.

“The whole idea is to target families and we are working on making it a child friendly environment. We can assure you there will be something for everyone,” he said.

He explained that while the exhibition has maintained a level of exclusiveness, with the content being limited to only fine art pieces, they were aiming to cater for a wide range of diverse styles of art in 2017 but maintaining the high quality standard of the artwork exhibited.

“We will focus on diversity in terms of visitors, exhibitors and activities for 2017,” Mhlongo said.

Msunduzi Pietermaritzburg Tourism is not convinced that they have been able to reach all artists in Pietermaritzburg and its surrounds and therefore encourage more artists to apply.  They are searching for potential new artists who can portray a diverse range of high quality artwork.

Art in the Park (AIP) events co-ordinator, Zama Nxasana said Msunduzi  Tourism had already received a large number of applications, but they were aiming to double the number of applications from last year.  She stressed, however, that the regular AIP artists were still welcomed.

“Our aim for 2017’s AIP is to make art accessible to all, while ensuring it remains at a high standard,” Nxasana said.
Msunduzi Pietermaritzburg Tourism is also looking at expanding the school art work display, and encouraged all schools to come on board and display their learners’ artworks.

Exhibition applications close at the end of this month and Msunduzi Pietermaritzburg Tourism. Applications are available at the Publicity House  in Pietermaritzburg or alternatively artists wishing to apply can email or phone 033 345 1348/9.