Words: Denise Mhlanga | Images: Robyn Davie Photography
The Afropolitan Gallery showcases works by artists from South Africa and the African continent while educating the emerging collector on the value and investment in art. Co-owner Nikki Wilsworth tells us more about the space at Victoria Yards.
How did your business start?
Having been in the creative industry and an independent curator for 17 years locally and internationally, I studied curatorial practice at Chelsea College, University of the Arts London, two years ago. I then moved into arts management and started curating art projects, fairs and advising people on art for homes. Towards the end of 2017, a Zurich businessman approached me to set up a gallery and design store in Switzerland. Instead, I chose to establish a gallery in South Africa first and then expand with growth. That is how my business partner John Johnson and I opened the Afropolitan Gallery on 1 June.
Why did you choose this area to set up shop?
I have always been interested in urban renewal developments and Victoria Yards follows this discourse and is supportive of creatives.
How did you find your premises?
I had a lunch with Paul Berman from Conurban, the developer who invited me to check out their new space. I fell in love with the dilapidated space with no roof, met with Brian Green and signed the lease agreement that afternoon.
Why are the premises ideally suited to your business?
Cultural relevance – the area is a melting pot of transitional African cultures.
Who are your neighbours?
Ben Tuge and Tshepho The Jeanmaker.
What are the shop rental prices like in this area?
How many people visit your business each day?
We see about 10 to 20 people.
Do you operate online as well?
Mostly with digital catalogues and social media sales via our website (afropolitangallery.com).
Do you have any expansion plans?
We plan to operate in Europe in the next three to five years.
What’s your most popular service/product?
Art sales, curating art for commercial and residential spaces, exhibitions, as well as jelly bean sweets!
071 100 7834 / 083 647 5282