What a cultural gem!
If you find yourself visiting Pietermaritzburg you cannot afford not to visit this gem of a cultural hub. The gallery has a cross-cultural permanent collection with regular ad-hoc exhibitions relevant its mission of providing a bridge between the colonial past and the new democratic dispensation and its idealistic future. Grounded in the KZN ethos but speaking to an international set of artistic ideas this museum with surprise you with the depth and variety of its offerings. The museum shop is well-stocked with unique items of interest and the restaurant offers suitable well priced fare.
— Review from Tripadvisor

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Tatham Art Gallery

The Tatham Art Gallery is one of the major art museums in South Africa. This art museum is funded by the Msunduzi Municipality and belongs to the residents of Pietermaritzburg, the capital of KwaZulu-Natal. The Tatham Art Gallery serves the Msunduzi region through the Visual Arts.

A major function of the Tatham Art Gallery, established in 1903, is to display art. This is accomplished through the hosting of a range of art exhibitions. These include travelling and researched exhibitions as well as exhibitions initiated by the Gallery, and based on art works in the permanent collection.

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 →

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It is that time of year again!

The FOTAG Committee invites all artists to start planning for the Fabulous Picture Show - an annual auction held to raise funds for the purchase of new art works for the Tatham Art Gallery’s permanent collection. Your donation will assist the continued growth of this art collection.

SUBMISSION DATES Gallery staff will be available to accept work from 14h00 to 16h00, on the following Tuesdays 03, 10,17 September 2019.
FINAL SUBMISSIONS DEADLINE Saturday 28 September 2019, between 10h00 and 14h00.

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 may be any size up to a maximum standard A4 only,  21 x 29.7cm.
4. Works on paper: the image should be no bigger than 13 x 21.7cm, to allow for mounting and framing.
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. Art works will be loaded onto the FOTAG website as they are submitted, so keep checking www.fotag.co.za for the latest entries.
9. Artists will be offered first option should their art works not be sold at the auction.

EXHIBITION DATES Sunday 17 November 10h00, until Friday 22 November 16h00.
AUCTION Friday 22 November at 18h00 for 18h30 (doors open at 18h00).
ENQUIRIES reena.bhoodram@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2823 (between 09h00 and 10h00 daily)

Visit www.fotag.co.za


Featuring Emma Farquharson, Erin Fourie, Audrey Mbuyazi and Nozuko Teto

Friday 20 September 2019 7:30 pm
Tatham Art Gallery
Secure parking
Tickets : R150 includes refreshments
Booking : Bryony 033 392 2825 (mornings only) or email at
Bryony.Clark@msunduzi.gov.za from 10 September

In September the Tatham Art Gallery, The Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery and Music Revival present a gala concert not to be missed! A special occasion featuring four 'Women in Song’!

The star-studded line-up includes local residents Emma Farquharson singing classical songs, Hilton’s favourite pop singer Erin Fourie, Midlands-based jazz and blues singer Audrey Mbuyazi and internationally acclaimed operatic soprano Nozuko Teto.

Emma Farquharson completed a BA Honours at Rhodes University and staged two successful shows at the Grahamstown National Arts Festival including 'Opera Found’, winning a 2017 Standard Bank Encore Ovation Award. Emma currently resides in Hilton where she is working on a number of concerts with Lara Kirsten, Ilse Myburgh, David Orr, Jacques Heynes & others. She is now furthering her vocal development with Margaret Clay-Bowen.

Soprano Nozuko Teto was born in Bizana, Eastern Cape. She studied at University of KwaZulu-Natal and University of Cape Town as a student of Kamal Khan and Virginia Davids. Thanks to a scholarship from the Nicolai Ghiaurov Foundation she was able to study with the renowned soprano Mirella Freni at her CUBEC Academy. In past years in Italy she sang in numerous concerts at the Teatro Comunale Pavarotti in Modena with the Puccini Festival Orchestra, in Amsterdam with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, with the Rotterdam Symphony. Nozuko he made her debut as Mimi in La Bohème in South Africa while in December 2012 she sang the role of the Countess in 'Le Nozze di Figaro' in Italy.

Audrey Mbuyazi has shared a stage with Hugh Masekela and Joseph Clark amongst others. She has performed in Norway accompanied by the Stavanger Gospel Company and toured South Africa in March 2012 with sold out concerts in Johannesburg, Soweto and Cape Town at the Baxter Theatre. Audrey has also performed in Lusaka-Zambia, Harare-Zimbabwe and London-UK. Her original music offers something for everyone, with a pleasing blend of African ballad, soul, jazz and classical.

Erin Fourie is a South African singer best known as a Top 16 contestant on the seventh season of the M-Net reality competition Idols, in 2011. Erin’s audition got four “yes” votes from the idols judges in Durban. Erin who hails from a family of accomplished musicians has been playing guitar since she was 13 and is one of Hilton’s busiest and best-loved vocalists.

The vocalists will be accompanied by pianist Ilse Myburgh, cellist Nigel Fish and guitarists James Grace who is making a fleeting visit to the city. Also to be heard at the piano is pianist Christopher Duigan who co-ordinates the programme.

Guest will be offered a glass of wine and soft drinks on arrival, served before the concert, and coffee and other refreshments at interval.

Booking for this gala event is essential and places are limited. Advance payment will be expected by EFT. Those attending are invited to dress in accordance with the splendour of the evening. To book contact with Bryony 033 392 2825 (mornings only) or email at Bryony.Clark@msunduzi.gov.za Tickets are R150 including refreshments.

Visit the Cafe Tatham for the best cappuccino and cake in town!

Temporary Exhibitions

From the collection:
Flowers in Art

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Flowers in Art

Schreiner Gallery
Opens Friday 20 September at 09h00
Closes Sunday 01 December at 17h00

This exhibition, drawn from the Gallery’s permanent collection, centres around images of flowers. Works on this exhibition include paintings and objects with flower themes from South African and international artists, who were inspired by flowers. We are showing this display over the period when we celebrate Spring in our country, in order to remind everyone of the possibilities of renewal and energy in our lives. Flowers have the ability to lift the spirits, charm us with their beauty and fragrance, and speak of the mysteries and wonder of creation.

Tatham Art Gallery:
Our Choice


Main Gallery
Opens Sunday 08 December 2019 at 11h00
Closes Sunday 19 April 2020 at 17h0

Our Choice is an eclectic exhibition of art works selected from the Tatham Art Gallery’s permanent collection by the people who are currently working at the Gallery. Both full time staff, and volunteers who serve on the Board of Trustees and its Committees have been invited to participate.

Some of the art works displayed have been in storage for many years, others are old favourites. Displayed with each art work is the name of the person who chose it, and a motivation for their choice. This could be a favourite work from the collection, or one that reminds the person of something. It may even be a work that is disliked for a certain reason. Texts vary from short sentences to longer explanations, and all of these contribute to the charm and magic of this exhibition of personal choices.

Mending the Scars:
A Group Exhibition


Schreiner Gallery
Opens Sunday 08 December 2019 at 11h00
Closes Sunday 09 February 2020 at 17h00

This exhibition, consisting of a variety of mixed media art works, deals with issues of pain and healing. Concerns about common issues around their families and the broader environment bring this group of four artists together. Sue Akerman, Phumzile Dlamini,  Corina Lemmer and Annette McMaster all belong to the National Fibreworks Group. The common thread that runs through the work of these individual artists   is empathy with their subjects and with their home country, South Africa.

The artists will conduct a two day workshop on 04 and 05 February 2020 where they will share their hand embroidery skills with participants.

Contact Reena Bhoodram for more information. reena.bhoodram@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2823

FOTAG’s Fabulous Picture Show 2019

Main Exhibition Room
Opens: Sunday 17 November 2019 at 10h00
Viewing hours and silent bidding: Monday 18 to Friday 22 November, 09h00 to 16h00
Auction: Friday 22 November at 18h00 for 18h30

It is that time of year again! Every year, in order to raise funds for new acquisitions for the permanent collection, the Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery (FOTAG) invite artists to donate small art works for the Fabulous Picture Show auction, which takes place in November. The sale of your donation will ensure the continued growth of this world class art museum collection.

The donation of small art works (no bigger than A4) provides for a wide and diverse selection of works for sale on the auction. The small scale creates a focus and an intimacy with the art work, both from the artist and the viewer. Smaller works are often more introspective and demand attention as viewers have to look closely to fully appreciate these miniature gems.

Sunday Concerts
Sundays 29 September, 3 and 24 November at 11h30

The Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery (FOTAG), in association with Music Revival, present a regular monthly concert which usually takes place on the last Sunday of each month.

The concerts highlight and showcase the Shigeru Kawai grand piano recently purchased by the Gallery. This ensures the continuation of highly successful and engaging concerts for local audiences at the Tatham.

Visit www.musicrevival.co.za for all details.

Sunday concerts at the Tatham Art Gallery now offer free tickets for children and students. Children under 16 should be accompanied by an adult and booking is still preferred.

In addition to the regular monthly concerts watch the press for details of additional concerts; ‘Women in Song’ concert during September and Music Revival’s annual Christmas concert in December.

Friends of the Tatham Art Gallery

June 2019 - June 2020
FOTAG Membership Subscriptions

For FOTAG to continue publicising the Gallery activities, we need your subscription. Apart from joining the free e-mail lists you can become a member! Subscriptions run from July 2019 until the end of June 2020. If you join now, your subscription will be valid until the end of June 2020. The subscription form can be found here!

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Children’s Holiday Workshop

Hand Embroidery
Tuesday 10 to Thursday 12 December 09h30 – 12h00
Cost : R90 for three days
All ages welcome. Booking is essential.

Students will learn basic stitches, colour theory, and how to apply ornaments to fabric.
Facilitators: Sue Akerman, Corina Lemmer and Annette McMaster, who will be exhibiting in the Schreiner Gallery.

pinky.nkabinde@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2811
reena.bhoodram@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2823


Visit the Tatham Shop for gifts, crafts, ceramics and artworks!


Current Exhibitions from the Collection

BIG: art works from the permanent collection

Main Gallery
Closes Sunday 10 November 2019 at 17h00
Walkabout of the exhibition : Friday 18 October from 13h00 to 14h00

A previous version of this exhibition, a selection of large South African art works from the Gallery’s permanent collection, attracted much interest and drew many comments from visitors. Most of the BIG works on display have been in storage, and so with some changes and additions to the previous exhibition, we are giving them air once again to speak their powerful messages. During the selection process we came across surprizing juxtapositions and conversations between works on display, and the exhibition gathered a momentum of its own. Visitors are challenged to find their own meaning and context in the display.

Flowers in Art

Schreiner Gallery
Opens Friday 20 September 2019 at 09h00 Closes Sunday 01 December 2019 at 17h00

This exhibition, drawn from the Gallery’s permanent collection, centres around images of flowers. Works on this exhibition include paintings and objects with flower themes from South African and international artists, who were inspired by flowers. We are showing this display over the period when we celebrate Spring in our country, in order to remind everyone of the possibilities of renewal and energy in our lives. Flowers have the ability to lift the spirits, charm us with their beauty and fragrance, and speak of the mysteries and wonder of creation.

Creative Flower Arranging for Beginners: a workshop with with Sue Akerman
Saturday 02 November 2019, from 09h30 to 12h30 Cost: R150

Sue Akerman, an artist, botanist and floral arranging specialist, will teach you basic tricks and techniques that will allow you to create unique flower arrangements. Join this workshop for a morning of fun! This experience will take place in the Lorna Ferguson Room, where you'll be provided with all the materials required. Enquiries/Bookings reena.bhoodram@msunduzi.gov.za or 033 392 2823

Migrations: Time - Place - Culture

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

Preller’s painting, Still Life with Pomegranates (1951), is a typical assembly of objets trouvé used by the artist in his still life paintings. The patterned vase, fruit and wooden fruiterer’s box are all talismans to which he frequently turned for artistic inspiration. The patterned Persian vase becomes a central object. This vase, given to him as a boy by his mother, was cherished and was often referred to by Preller as one of his 'household gods', a collection of modest but important objects that were to inspire works throughout his lifetime.

A brass plaque on the base of the frame is engraved; “Jan Hofmeyer Memorial trophy for public speaking, presented by Alan Paton”. This painting was used as floating trophy and presented to the winner of the Jan Hofmeyer Speech Contest which was held annually, until it was purchased by the Tatham Art Gallery.

  • Perimeter Gallery

Continue reading →

Alexis Preller,  Still Life with Pomegranates , oil on canvas

Alexis Preller, Still Life with Pomegranates, oil on canvas

Containers for Liquid

This display is a juxtaposition of liquid-holding containers from the Gallery’s permanent collection, which represents different cultures, purposes, designs and materials.

Porcelain originated in the East and has been widely used to hold hot liquids. René Lalique (1860-1945) was a famous French designer of glass containers, often used as vases. The Nala and Magwaza families are renowned for their exquisitely decorated burnished earthenware forms, based on traditional Zulu beer vessels.

On show are vessels made from materials as diverse as earthenware, porcelain, glass, wood, and bronze. We challenge you as the viewer to compare the various forms and functions.

Continue reading →

  • Ceramics Room

Bonisiwe Magwaza, Ukhamba, earthenware

This display, selected from the Gallery’s permanent collection, features landscape paintings by South African artists. For concert goers they have become a serene background to the world-class music performed in this room. While listening, the  audience could  focus  on  a painting and ponder on the meaning of land from different perspectives. One could ask: Who painted this landscape? How has the scene changed over the years? What impact did the changes have on people’s lives?

Landscapes by South African artists can stir up different associations with the land for different viewers, such as elements of memory and place.

This display, selected from the Gallery’s permanent collection, focuses on landscape painting by South African artists, but makes room for some exceptions. To a greater or lesser degree, all these artworks deal with abstraction.

Andrew Verster’s Storm Colour could suggest the climatic changes that are taking place and affecting our weather patterns which in many cases have become unpredictable and intense.

Continue reading →

  • Lorna Ferguson Room

Andrew Verster,  Storm Colour,  acrylic on canvas

Andrew Verster, Storm Colour, acrylic on canvas

Film Club

FilmClub Season Three Lecture Theatre
Sundays 01, 08 September and 08 December
Tuesdays 17 September, 05, 12, 19, 26 November and 03, 10 December

FilmClub continues with its third season of 2019 which runs from 01 September to 10 December. The films are shown in the Tatham Lecture Theatre and patrons are able to enjoy a light lunch or supper in Café Tatham before the movie. Each screening is preceded by a short introduction that draws viewers’ attention to the salient aspects of the film they are about to view. FilmClub charges a nominal R35 per show, with subscribers enjoying a substantial discount. Booking is essential as the lecture theatre has limited seating.

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


Reference Library

The Library remains closed to the public until further notice

Ekkehard Hans at work

Ekkehard Hans at work


Almost two years ago, on 26 May 2017, the Tatham Art Gallery experienced a devastating flood which damaged a substantial number of paintings in our collection. Many friends of the Gallery came forward to help turn around this tragedy, and today we can look back on a remarkable rescue and recovery operation. An overview of the events in the form of a documentary film and an illustrated talk by the painting restorer, Ekkehard Hans, was presented on 14 May 2014

Closed because of the Flood, a documentary film by Gabriel and Thomas Bullen. 24 min
Brothers Gabriel and Thomas Bullen, who happened to be in Pietermaritzburg at that time, documented the events and called the film Closed because of the Flood. The cameras caught the action of the moment, but the film makers also returned to capture elements of the restoration process. This film was selected as the opening film for the 2019 Milkbusch International Short Film Festival earlier this year.

Restoration, an illustrated talk by Ekkehard Hans.
Ekkehard Hans, who is a highly trained restorer, originally from Europe, has been working for weeks at a time on the restoration of paintings and frames ever since the flood in May 2017. He gave an illustrated talk about his work, and give insight into the guiding principles for a restorer of museum collections.

A painting showing water damage : L- R 1 & 2;
After restoration: 3 & 4.


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