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DECOREX SA (article first published : 2007-03-5)

Buying art for reasons other than simply matching it with scatter cushions gets the thumbs up from Decorex SA with the appointment of Helene Hibbert as art consultant. Founder of Galerie Boulevard and an artist herself, she will steer the selection of art exhibited at Decorex shows.

“Decorex is moving in a more curatorial direction in terms of selecting art which could interpret the local vernacular of South African culture and art making,” says Helene Hibbert. “The vetting process is a vital step towards our goal to exhibit selective mainstream contemporary art of a more challenging nature where the viewer is confronted with more cerebral work.”

Melanie Robinson, director of Decorex SA, adds: “Now, more than ever, visitors want to see original art at Decorex. In high technology homes and workplaces, it becomes crucial to remain connected to the emotions and energy captured in a work of art. With galleries clamouring to be part of Decorex, it’s vital that art of high quality be exhibited.

“What constitutes good art remains a topic of debate,” she continues. “We see it as work with depth, something that elicits conversation, even debate. Tastes and budgets differ, and not everyone wants to collect art for its investment value. Furthermore, good art is not always beautiful. That’s why we called in the experts to assist with the selection of art exhibitors.”

This process is also in line with the goals of the Decorex Kizo Art Awareness programme launched in 2006 to support South African art and promote the pleasures of living with original art. Many of the 100,000 annual visitors to Decorex shows are in the process of decorating their homes or are in the décor trade. This highlights the role that Decorex can play in providing a high-profile platform for the promotion of South African artists.

AffordART, this year’s initiative in the Decorex Kizo Art Awareness programme, features leading artists invited to show works priced to encourage buying original art. Other Decorex highlights supporting South African authentic, creative talent include the Sanlam student design competition Fabric.Form.Function and the industry forum Talk Show.

Decorex KZN takes place from March 21 to 25 at the International Convention Centre, Durban.

For more information and dates for other centres, visit www.decorex.co.za




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