How to explore South Africa, while staying at home

Many of us under lockdown are yearning to get out, to escape, and explore. While we can’t physically do so for a few weeks yet, we can start planning our travels by exploring virtually.

Google Arts & Culture has created 12 important and interesting South African collections, and we’ve curated 5 of them – just for you.

Nelson Mandela: 30 Years of Freedom

Be inspired – The Nelson Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom gallery celebrates 30 years since Mandela was released, on 11 February 1990. Relive Madiba’s speech on that historic day, refresh your memory about the man himself or explore 12 of the biggest moments in the 30 years since his release.

Johannesburg Art Gallery

Take in a gallery – The Johannesburg Art Gallery boasts the largest public collection of modern and contemporary art in sub-Saharan Africa, including The Evidence Of Things Not Seen – Photography and Resistance gallery. This collection looks at the role photography played as a weapon and a means to document the struggle against apartheid, and features works exclusively from artists of colour.

The Maboneng Precinct

Hit the streets – Explore some of South Africa’s evolving public art landscape by visiting The Maboneng Precinct, which is home to more than 50 public artworks, including many large scale works, and the Baz Art gallery, which highlights the work of Baz Art – an NGO that works with communities to explore public art development opportunities in Cape Town.

SA’s Textile Industry

Feel it – Social Fabric is a collaborative platform for artists, designers, and textile manufacturers who explore felting, mohair, textiles, and identity in the stories in this collection. The Iziko South African National Gallery collection features fashion, beading, and bags in an expansive online exhibition, that emphasises art from Southern Africa.

The Steve Biko Foundation


Remember it – Engage with a slice of South Africa’s contemporary history through the Steve Biko Foundation collection, including exhibits focussing on Biko’s final days, his legacy and the Black Consciousness movement.