In a series of firsts, art galleries between Wale Street and Hout Street in Cape Town’s CBD will collectively stay open until 21h00 on the first Thursday of November 2012: November 1st.
First Thursdays is a global concept brought to Cape Town by local collaborator and dot connector Gareth Pearson – who is behind initiatives like Cape Town Bicycle Commuter, TEDxStellenbosch and East City Alley.
What inspired Gareth to start the initiative in Cape Town? “When I was in Zurich, I happened to be there during Lange Nacht der Museen: Long Night of the Museums happens once a year when all the museums are open until 02h00. You buy a single access ticket with free public transport between venues and you get to explore the museums until the early hours of the morning. It was just amazing. I really like the idea of a lot of things happening in the city besides just restaurants and bars. First Thursdays is not a new concept and has been happening in cities like London and Seattle, but I want to test it in Cape Town.”
If the experiment goes well, First Thursdays will become a monthly event across the city. Participating galleries include AVA Gallery, Brundyn + Gonsalves, Erdmann Contemporary, G2 Art, KND Nautical Gallery, and are accompanied this 1 November by a pop-up show at 99 Loop Street and a film screening at Clarke’s Bar and Dining Room.
There is no set order or sequence in which you need to walk, and you can go to as many or as few of the galleries as you like. So instead of jumping on the bus, your bike or in your car on Thursday after work, take a walk on the artful side of the street.
• The very first First Thursday with take place on 1 November from 17h00 to 21h00. To support the experiment, join the Facebook page and hit the city streets this Thursday.
• Read more about Gareth Pearson’s other city initiatives in the November issue of City Views, on Cape Town as a collaborative city.
Text Alma Viviers Image A map of the First Thursday walking route between galleries. (Select it to view larger format)