South African museums and art galleries are found throughout the country, from Aliwal North to Shoshanguve.
The country's 300 plus museums are housed in prestigious historical buildings, in cutting-edge modern constructions, on university campuses, in the form of cultural villages or house museums, or as aspects of the natural landscape. They are dedicated to an endless range of subjects - history, culture, transport, sport, photography, gold, medicine, entomology, palaeontology and anthropology.
Since 1994, a number of new museums recording the recent anti-apartheid freedom struggle and the advent of South African democracy, have opened. Their captivating stories are enhanced with high-tech, interactive devices at locations such as Johannesburg's Apartheid Museum and Constitution Hill, at the Hector Peterson Museum in Soweto, at Freedom Park in Pretoria and Red Location outside Port Elizabeth.
The content of our art galleries also span a lengthy timeline - from traditional arts and crafts to contemporary installations. South African art too finds unusual platforms, from the caves and overhangs which sport ancient rock art, to stately institutions such as the National Gallery in Cape Town, to corporate collections and commercial galleries, right down to restaurants and coffee bars.
South African art galleries and museums do not shy away from controversial material, which are often sparks vigorous and necessary debate about our society and the events and concepts that shape it. They are repositories of objects, representations and records that give us insight into the past, glimpses of the future, and preserve our present for generations to come.
In the vast material found in museums and art galleries of South Africa, there is something to suit every interest, be it academic or quirky, conventional or off-beat.
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