Cape Town museum heralds Hugh Masekela gallery

The memory of jazz icon Hugh Masekela will live on in the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town.
The memory of jazz icon Hugh Masekela will live on in the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town.
Image: Courtesy of Zeitz MOCAA

The memory of jazz icon Hugh Masekela will live on in the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa in Cape Town. A permanent gallery has been dedicated to the jazz musician who passed away in January after a long battle with cancer.

Design Indaba founder Ravi Naidoo roped in acclaimed British designer Thomas Heatherwick to design the Masekela gallery. The museum intended to name a wing of the gallery after the Design Indaba but instead Naidoo requested that the museum be named after the jazz icon.

“I believe it is fitting that a cultural icon such as Hugh Masekela is honoured by yet another cultural icon such as Zeitz Mocaa‚ which has rapidly garnered global renown and several awards for architecture since its launch‚” said Naidoo.

“The Design Indaba has been at ground zero in growing the creative industries in the new democratic South Africa. We want to be relevant to our city‚ and its challenges and needs. And we want our platform to be exemplary in presenting the best of our city and country to the world. We are cultural‚ creative and business envoys –and feel privileged to represent the city. That is why we would rather be the conduit for this important moment in South African cultural history than its focus‚” he said.

Barbara Masekela was present on Friday to accept the honour on behalf of the Masekela family.

Co-founder of Zeitz Mocaa David Green said: “Hugh Masekela was a giant within the arts and culture space. Hugh’s songs and music told the world who African people were and it is entirely fitting that this museum‚ whose main purpose is to tell African stories through African art‚ should name the gallery after Hugh Masekela.”

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