The Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa was unveiled ahead of its public opening on 22 September 2017 at Cape Town’s V&A Waterfront. Designed by London based designers Heatherwick Studio, the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa, or Zeitz MOCAA, is set to become the world’s most important exhibition space for African art.
The museum is located inside a grain silo built on Cape Town’s waterfront in the 1920s, which used to be the city’s tallest building. 9,500 sq metres of custom designed space spread over nine floors, carved out of the monumental structure of the historic complex. Heatherwick’s team have carved huge sections out of the building’s tubular to create a complex network of 80 gallery spaces. In these places, tubes were cut back and the edges were polished to reveal the contrast between the rough aggregate of the old concrete. Laminated glass was also used for a mirrored finish, featuring a fritted pattern designed by the late African artist El Loko. Based on the shape of a single grain, the museum centres around a huge atrium that was scaled up to span the full height of the 27-metre-high structure. Filled with bars and restaurants, a rooftop sculpture garden and a hotel, the museum will also house Centres for a Costume Institute, Photography, Curatorial Excellence, the Moving Image, Performative Practice and Art Education.