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Words: Lucy Sarah O’Connell | Images: Supplied

For the last five years, the Winter Sculpture Fair has become an undeniable highlight in the Joburg arts calendar. This year, the fair arrives with a new name, and backed by a new sponsor, American Express, and long-time organiser, Artlogic, the 2018 American Express Winter Sculpture Fair is set to be bigger than ever.

If you haven’t had the pleasure of attending the fair before, it’s the kind of event that you’ll get excited for year after year once you’ve experienced it. Dubbed an “enchanting sensory journey”, the fair is all about creating the perfect day trip where entire families can enjoy food, drinks and art in a spectacular setting. Taking place over two days, the fair will be hosted at the Nirox Foundation Sculpture Park in The Cradle of Humankind, which makes it easy to access from Joburg, while also allowing visitors to feel like they’ve left the city to go on a real adventure.

While many Joburg art galleries might provide access to beautifully sculpted works of art, the fair is unique in that it creates access to local and international sculptures that wouldn’t otherwise be available to the public. Visitors will also be able to see works by acclaimed Ndebele artist Esther Mahlangu. 

Aided by the sheer size of its venue, the seasonally curated larger-than-life sculptures that are dotted across the landscape make for the kind of experience that calls to mind fairy tales and foreign lands.

While there’s no doubt that the sculptures are the main event, the fair has also become well known for its impressive food and drinks offering. In partnership with Franschhoek Tourism, Artlogic brings in the best food and wine from the Franschhoek Valley each year, ensuring that there’s something delicious to sip or nibble on while you take in the beauty of the surroundings. Following the theme “Not a single story”, inspired by the quote from Nigerian writer Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, “The danger of a single story. Our lives, our cultures, are composed of many overlapping stories,” this year’s fair is one event that you won’t want to miss.

The American Express Winter Sculpture Fair will take place on 12 and 13 May and tickets are available through TixSA. For more information on The American Express Winter Sculpture Fair, phone Artlogic on 011 447 3868 or visit the event website.

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