Many of the city's top art galleries are situated along a 1.6km stretch of a major thoroughfare, Jan Smuts Avenue, that links the suburb of Rosebank to Parkwood. Start your trip at the corner of Jellicoe Avenue in Rosebank at Circa Gallery and Everard Read, a 10-minute walk from Rosebank's Gautrain Station and Rosebank Mall. Or for an uphill walk option, start at the corner of Wells Avenue in Parkwood, where there is plenty of parking space at The Parks, a small shopping complex. There you'll find the excellent Park Cafe for good coffee and tasty breakfast choices.
Begin by taking a look around sister galleriesCirca Gallery and Everard Read, Johannesburg's oldest commercial art gallery established in 1913. Both galleries showcase contemporary paintings and sculpture and the post-modern Circa gallery is an architectural landmark that is in itself an artwork to be admired. Names to look out for include Angus Taylor, Deborah Bell, Lionel Smit, Joni Brenner, Nelson Makamo and Colbert Mashile.
Next door is Trumpet, part of the Keyes Art Miledevelopment, another impressive landmark building housing contemporary gallery SMAC Gallery. Walking down the hill turn right into Jan Smuts Avenue and take a short detour down 7th Avenue to visit Gallery MOMO. Founded in 2002 by Monna Mokoena, Gallery MOMO is known for its exciting list of boundary-pushing African artists that include Mary Sibande, Blessing Ngobeni and photographers Allana Vellissia Jackson and Roger Ballen.
Head back to Jan Smuts Avenue and continue to the next block where you’ll find Goodman Gallery, promoting A-list South African artists and photographers the likes of world-renowned multi-media wizard William Kentridge, and photo men David Goldblatt and Mikhael Subotzky. Facing Goodman Gallery on the other side of the street is Bolton Road Collection, a stylish cafe, restaurant, bar and bakery that is the perfect pit stop on your art walk. Don't forget to walk around the building to see the huge four storey mural of an elephant on the rear wall.
Just up the street are yet more galleries like Gallery 2 for fine art and painting and David Krut Projects the city's best-known print-making gallery and art book publisher. Smack dab between the galleries stop off at Priest Espresso Bar for an espresso and to admire the monochromatic mural by Peter Mammes.
From here cross back over the road again to visit the fine art gallery Lizamore & Associates and look out for the peacock-blue wall, behind which is the superb David Krut Bookstore with its fine collection of art books.The bookstore shares space with Hadeda, filled with homeware treasures from Mexico and a few doors up, encased in a Moorish-styled building, is Kim Sacks Gallery who specialise in beautiful ceramics, authentic African artefacts, fine beadwork pieces and other precious objet d’art.
Gallery openings usually take place on Thursday nights, with walkabouts on Saturday mornings. Most galleries are closed on Mondays. See ourexhibitions listings for all the latest shows and go to Art Galleries to find out more about the city's many galleries.