Stevenson opened in 2003 in Cape Town’s Green Point district, after a visit to documenta 11, curated by Okwui Enwezor, by founding directors Michael Stevenson and Andrew da Conceicao. Moved by Enwezor’s ethos, they decided to create a new platform for contemporary art in South Africa, which was short on dedicated spaces at the time. Since its inception, Stevenson has connected local artists to the global art world, and introduced international practitioners to South African audiences.Read More
In 2008, the gallery partnered with David Brodie to open an outpost in Johannesburg. That same year, the space in Cape Town relocated to a former sweet factory in Woodstock, where it has operated ever since. The Joburg gallery moved to the Braamfontein precinct near Wits University in 2010, and in 2019 it joined the network of galleries situated in or near Parktown North. Stevenson’s small Amsterdam office, shared with photographic agency WeFolk, opened the same year.
In 2012, the gallery introduced its current partnership structure, and it is currently owned and operated by its 13 directors: Federica Angelucci, Marc Barben, Lerato Bereng, Joost Bosland, David Brodie, Sinazo Chiya, Andrew da Conceicao, Jessica Honeyman, Lanese Jaftha, Sisipho Ngodwana, Sophie Perryer, Alexander Richards and Michael Stevenson.
While more than half of the artists on Stevenson’s roster — including Jo Ractliffe, Moshekwa Langa, Serge Alain Nitegeka, Nicholas Hlobo, Penny Siopis and Simphiwe Ndzube — were either born in South Africa and/or are now based there, the programming has become increasingly international over the past 15 years. The gallery represents Paulo Nazareth, from Brazil, Viviane Sassen, from the Netherlands, Portia Zvavahera, from Zimbabwe, and the American artist Odili Odita, among other artists from elsewhere.
Exhibitions and Publications
Recent solo exhibitions include Zanele Muholi, Robin Rhode, Thenjiwe Niki Nkosi, Mawande Ka Zenzile, and Barthélémy Toguo. Notable group exhibitions include Distant Relatives/Relative Distance (2006), which featured works by visiting artists such as Julie Mehretu and Wangechi Mutu, and Trade Routes Revisited (2012), a tribute to Enwezor’s seminal 1997 Johannesburg Biennale, including contributions from Pierre Huyghe, Olafur Eliasson and Thomas Hirschhorn. Stevenson has exhibited in the Galleries sector at Art Basel since 2016.
Publishing is a key element of Stevenson’s programming, and the gallery routinely produces artist monographs, exhibition catalogues and compilations of artist interviews. Four times a year, the gallery publishes .INFO, a small printed newsletter that gets posted to its global network of friends and allies.
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