Sunday, 19 February 2017


We have visited several museums during the first half of our Capetown adventure. These have been informative, and focus largely on oppression and subjugation which has been a large part of this country's history.

The South African National Gallery 

This gallery houses contemporary art, which is a bit lost on me.  There were some interesting pieces about women and their conrtributions to society through their work.  Much of this was "crafty" and thus explored the difference, if any between art and craft.  For me, the most interesting piece was an assault vehicle outside the main entrance, completely covered in the intricate beeding which is so popular here in Africa.

The Slave Lodge

This is an interesting building, having been built to house slaves in the late 1600's.  The museum focuses on slavery in Capetown, the plight of the slaves, the deplorable conditions they lived and worked under.  It also explored apartheid and the implications this has had on society.  It concluded with the elections which were held after the end of the apartheid regime.

The South African Jewish Museum

This is a lovely museum, housed in part in the oldest synagog in South Africa.  It explores the history of the jews through the ages.  It shows the arrival of the jews in South africa as they escaped persection, and further eexplores their contribution to society.  In particular it showed the story  of one  immigrant who worked his way from peddler to ostrich farmer  to diamond miner and eventually to become the first jewish senator in the country.

The building itself is remarkable with a very modern extension, housing a replica of a Lithuania village, typical of the villages of many of the jewish immigrants origins.

The Holocaust Centre

The name says it all.  A chilling and very difficult museum showing the rise of the Nazi's and their "final solution", the eradication of the jews. It focused in the last part on survivors who came to reside in South Africa.  Too chilling for words, or pictures.  We were deeply touched by this most moving and effective display of such horrible and despicable actions!

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