Enjoy a superb cappuccino and cake at Cafe Tatham, browse for gifts and carefully selected craft in the Tatham Shop and if you are lucky, take in a music concert. Or simply enjoy the display of artworks in carefully curated exhibitions!

Tatham Art Gallery

The Tatham Art Gallery is one of the major art museums in South Africa. Situated in Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KwaZulu-Natal, the Tatham Art Gallery serves the Msunduzi region through the Visual Arts.

The Tatham Art Gallery hosts a range of Art Exhibitions. These include travelling and researched exhibitions as well as exhibitions initiated by the Gallery based on art works in the permanent collection.

A major function of the Tatham Art Gallery, established in 1903, is to display art. This is accomplished through the organizing and hosting of temporary exhibitions and ongoing changes in the permanent display areas.

Temporary Exhibitions

Standard Bank Young Artist for Visual Art 2017
Beth Diane Armstrong: in perpetuum

Main Exhibition Room
Closes Sunday 20 May 2018 at 17h00

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Beth Diane Armstrong highlights the use of sculpture to explore different expressions of density and looseness in relation to scale, structure, materiality, space, representation, and process.

The title, in perpetuum, suggests something which is ongoing and everlasting. Armstrong applies the term to negotiating an unremitting pull between the desire to be entirely overwhelmed and subsumed by a sculpture and the drive to resolve and contain the idiosyncratic challenges posed by it. Armstrong’s process is the translation of fleeting, abstract experiences into the permanence of a physically demanding material such as steel.

Armstrong’s mastery of the medium is captured in this body of work. It accentuates her meticulous processes, her attention to detail and her astounding ability to effortlessly switch between intricate smaller works and imposing large-scale masses. Themes and motifs are drawn from her entire career as a sculptor and mark a full-circle return to where it began, having received her Masters in Fine Art from Rhodes University in 2010.

As a whole, in perpetuum presents Armstrong’s work as a continuously self-generating system driven by the interplay between density and looseness.

Five degrees of separation: Terri Broll, Ian Calder, Heather Gourlay-Conyngham, Louise Hall and Terence King

Schreiner Gallery
Opens Sunday 25 March at 09h30 for 10h00
Closes Sunday 20 May 2018 at 17h00


The five artists featured in this exhibition are part of an ongoing local peer mentoring and discussion group. All are former students or lecturers connected to the Centre for Visual Art at the local campus of the University of KwaZulu-Natal.

The artists’ works are connected in the first instance by the immediacy of communicating via marks on a canvas or other support. The works, although based in observation, display differing degrees of realism, so as to amplify the interpretive possibilities of the subject.


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Current Exhibitions from the Collection


Time - Place - Culture

This eclectic display of British, French and South African art works spans more than three centuries. Each art work has its own story to tell.

  • Perimeter Gallery

Vessels and Containers

 Part of the current display is a historic overview of 20th century South African commercial potteries. These potteries, of which few still operate, played an important part in South African society between the two World Wars. Viewers interested in the history of design will find a fascinating fusion of European and African influences. 

  • Ceramics Room

The South African Landscape

This display, selected from the Gallery’s permanent collection, features landscape paintings by South African artists.  The paintings are as varied as the South African Landscape, and show many different ways in which artists engage with their environ

Any two or more paintings in this display invite comparison and discussion.

  • Lorna Ferguson Room


Walkabouts & Lectures

Five degrees of separation: Terri Broll, Ian Calder, Heather Gourlay-Conyngham, Louise Hall and Terence King

Walkabout of the exhibition by the artists

Thursday 10 May 2018 from 13h00 to 14h00


The Tatham Art Gallery was thrilled to host Prof Federico Freschi in two presentations at the Gallery.  Prof Freschi is Executive Dean: Faculty of Art, Design & Architecture at the University of Johannesburg and was the South African curator of the recent Matisse Exhibition at the Standard Bank Gallery. Johannesburg.

On Friday 1 September Prof Ian Calder presented an illustrated talk and walkabout on Rorke’s Drift Ceramics.   A well-known craft centre was established there by Scandinavian missionaries and teachers in the 1960s, The ceramics studio became well-known for its unique fusion of African and Western styles and techniques. 


Selected Sundays at 11h30

The Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery (FOTAG), in association with Music Revival and other organisations, present a regular monthly concert which usually takes place on the last Sunday of each month. The planned concerts for this quarter are as follows:

Sunday 03 June   
Christopher Duigan: Twenty 'Not So' Popular Piano Solos

Sunday 01 July    
Christopher Duigan (piano) and David Salleras (saxophone)

Sunday 29 July   
Trios for clarinet, viola and piano

Sunday 26 Aug    
Christopher Duigan: The Music of Franz Liszt


Visit www.musicrevival.co.za 

The Fabulous Picture Show 2018


It’s that time of the year again! The FOTAG Committee invites all artists to start planning for the Fabulous Picture Show, an annual auction held in the Gallery to raise funds for the purchase of new art works for the Tatham Art Gallery permanent collection. Your donation as an artist will assist the continued growth of this collection.

How does the Fabulous Picture Show work?

1.  Artists donate up to three original, unframed works of art to FOTAG.

2.  Signed, editioned, original digital prints are welcomed, but not prints of existing originals.

3.  Boards and canvases are restricted to a maximum standard A4 only (21 x 27.9cm).

4.  Works on paper: the image should be no bigger than 13 x 21.7cm, to allow for mounting.

5.  All 2D art works in the prescribed sizes will be framed by FOTAG, and hung by Gallery staff.

6.  3D works are also welcome, size not to exceed A4 dimensions.

7.  Acceptance of art work is at the discretion of the FOTAG Committee.

8.  Artists will be offered first option should their art works not be sold at the auction.

Submission Dates

Gallery staff will be available to accept work from 14h00 to 16h00, on the following Tuesdays: 04, 11, 18 & 25 September 2018.

The final submissions deadline is Saturday 29 September 2018, between 09h00 and 14h00

Film Club

Lecture Theatre
Season Two
Tuesdays 22 May to 31 July at 19h00

On Tuesdays from 18h00, patrons can enjoy a light, inexpensive  supper  in  Café  Tatham  before  the  start of  the  evening’s  movie.  FilmClub  charges  a  nominal R35 per show, with subscribers enjoying a substantial discount. Booking is essential as the venue can only hold 50 people.

FilmClub aims to foster an understanding and appreciation of cinema as an art form. Each screening is preceded by a short introduction that draws viewers’ attention to  the  salient  aspects  of  the  film they  are about to view.

antonvdhoven@gmail.com or 033 343 1355 / 083 233 2663

  Introductory talk before a film screening

 Introductory talk before a film screening

Lectures and Talks

Lecture Theatre
Selected Saturdays at 11h00

A programme of exciting and varied Saturday talks has been scheduled for 2018. Booking is essential.

Dr Alleyn Diesel, retired academic from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, continues her programme of thought provoking talks in the Gallery's Lecture Theatre.

Saturday 05 May  The Tamil Diaspora
Saturday 02 June   Who is Karen Armstrong?
Saturday 04 August  Who is the Goddess?

The cost of R30 per lecture goes towards buying new stock for the Gallery’s Craft Shop.

Enquiries/bookings reena.bhoodram@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2823



A FOTAG Fund Raising Event

THE FAMOUS ANNUAL FOTAG QUIZ on Friday 8 SEPTEMBER 2017  was a grand success.  A capacity audience were entertained by Quiz master and political columnist  William Saunderson-Meyer. Thanks to everyone who supported FOTAG and a big thank you to our sponsors who supported us so generously with donated prizes!


The Permanent Collection

A selection of the Tatham Art Gallery's permanent collection is always on display. Work by South African and European artists is displayed upstairs. The work of KwaZulu-Natal artists is displayed downstairs. A selection of ceramics is displayed in the Ceramics Room.

The Main Exhibition Room

The Tatham Art Gallery displays major exhibitions in the Main Exhibition Room downstairs. Exhibitions change on a regular basis. These include travelling and researched exhibitions showing the works of groups or individual artists of significance. There are also exhibitions organised by the Gallery that draw on the works in the permanent collection or from artists of KwaZulu-Natal.

The Schreiner Gallery

The Schreiner Gallery is an exhibition space dedicated to smaller temporary exhibitions. Artists may apply to use this space for solo or group exhibitions.

Visit the EXHIBITIONS page here for more and for requirements if you wish to apply.


The Tatham Art Gallery has an extensive Education and Outreach programme, including art classes for the youth, Art Educator training , an Artist’s Forum and Lectures and talks.   Continue reading →



Find out more about your possible experience at the Tatham! Go to VISIT!