Nandos is spicing up the South African art scene
by: Terry Simelane-Mathabathe - 11 October 2018
Nandos is opening up the industry one artwork at a time
Nandos opened up their doors to the media and a select group of influencers in the last week of September to unveil their new tricked out head office at Central Kitchen in Berea. The space is a celebration of South African art and design.
Central kitchen, like all Nandos restaurants around the world, is tastefully decorated with art pieces designed and made by South African artists and artisans. The edgy brand prides itself on admiring and supporting South African art and artists. It has done this through the Nandos Art Initiative which consists of various programs that enable artists to showcase and profit from their art.
The Nandos Art Initiative in collaboration with the Spier Arts Trust started in 2001 and 17 years later houses a collection of over 17 000 art pieces by South African artists. Known for not running with the crowd, Nandos calls themselves a “21st century gallery”, displaying artworks in a way that is accessible to the public.
All of the pieces (including the furniture) is sourced from local artists and artisans. The artwork is paid for every time that it is commissioned. “We support several artist development programmes, which are administered by Spier Arts Trust. We also run our own design competition – Nando’s Hot Young Designer – aimed at identifying and supporting emerging Southern African designers. This year we’ve launched the Nando’s Portal to Africa – an online website from which Nando’s interior designers around the world can order from our curated collection of furniture and lights.” said Kirsty Niehaus who runs the Nandos Art Initiative
As part of the tour, we got to visit Victoria Yards, a creative space in Berea where the artists and artisans get to do their work.
The programmes in the Arts Initiative aims to upskill, train and build the artists and their careers. “We’re passionate about Southern Africa and sharing its story in a way that makes a meaningful difference in people’s lives,” says Kirsty. The programmes include Creative Block (where artists are tasked with painting a small canvas), Nando’s Artist Society, Site Specific Commissions, Creative Exchanges, Spier Mosaic Academy, Quebeka Bead Studio and the Nando’s Chicken Run.
You can find more information on the Nandos Art Initiative here