When the rain started pouring down on Friday it did not bode well for the monthly Hermanus First Fridays (HFF) Artwalk. But thankfully, in the late afternoon, the skies cleared as enthusiastic artwalkers took to the streets to visit the 21 art galleries in the centre of town.

Beautiful art at Jeandré Marinier’s Gallery. PHOTO: Taylum Meyer

In Art Alley and The Courtyard off Harbour Road there was plenty to see, including the new Art@Africa Hermanus Gallery which had opened just the day before, Jewellery Art by Simon right next door, the Art of Thread exhibition at the FynArts Gallery, and an unusual display of ‘cat works’ at Rossouw Modern’s SPACE Gallery.

Heather Blackstock of Panthera Africa explained to artwalkers how the big cats in this sanctuary near Stanford had created the ‘paw paintings’, which were for sale along with a number of works donated by well-known local artist, Shelley Adams. This initiative forms part of Panthera’s fundraising efforts, following the devastating effect that Covid-19 has had on their ability to generate enough income to continue caring for the 25 rescued animals that are being provided a safe haven by this NPO.

Stuart Dods in front of one of his paintings that form part of his ‘Thrones and a Ladder’ exhibition at the Lifestyle Studio Gallery in Aberdeen Street. PHOTO: Taylum Meyer

At the Lifestyle Studio Gallery in Aberdeen Street, this historic fisherman’s cottage previously occupied by The Barefoot Cook was a hive of activity. The premises now function as a gallery for local artist Jeandré Marinier, while also accommodating a special guest artist (this month it’s Stuart Dods), an exhibition of collectable art by various South African artists, ceramics by Erna Dry, home décor by Lavender & Lilies Interiors and Nguni rugs by Inkomo. This gallery also gives the students of the Hermanus Visual Art & Design Centre the opportunity to exhibit their work.

This month’s artwalk included a treasure hunt to locate a pair of bespoke earrings designed and crafted by Geta Finlayson, but try as they might, no artwalkers were able to find them. This was a rather disappointing outcome, especially as there was a very strong clue as to their whereabouts at one particular gallery – but hopefully artwalkers can take another shot next month!

Budding artist Caitlynn Viljoen is a regular visitor to Leon Müller’s gallery in High Street, Art Thirst. PHOTO: Taylum Meyer

On the evening of 4 December, the HFF galleries will once again host the Night of 1 000 Drawings. This much-anticipated annual event is based on the concept that we should all enjoy the indulgence of purchasing artwork – even if modest in terms of size and price. For that reason, on that one night, all donated A5-sized artworks will be displayed and available for purchase, all at the same price of R100 each.

Anyone wishing to contribute artworks can drop them off at any of the HFF galleries. All the proceeds from the sales of these artworks will be divided between selected Hermanus charities.

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