A work in progress the Victoria Yards complex is home to a number of prominent local artists including Blessing Ngobeni, Ayanda Mabulu, James Delaney and world-renowned photographer Roger Ballen. It is also the site of the gorgeous Daville Baillie Gallery showcasing contemporary art as well as selling South African masters, and the Daville Baillie bookshop with a great selection of art books and other interesting titles curated by a leading former arts journalist, writer, editor and curator Matthew Krouse.
Artisans workshops include the fantastic furniture studio and factory of David Krynauw, the Smelt glass studio where you can take a class in glass-making and glass-blowing and Coote & Wench, a husband and wife team who create magical furniture pieces and lighting from industrial parts. French jewellery maker Helene Thomas's bijou studio Yol is an enticing cavern of exquisite hand crafted jewels. Calling herself a 'nomad jeweller' she combines traditional African bead art with contemporary designs.
Another must-stop is Tshepo The Jean Maker's studio. Tshepo's first crafted pair of jeans, the Presidential Slim Fit', kick-started his denim career in 2015. This was after he abandoned a future in filmmaking for fashion design. Don't leave without a pair of Joburg-designed denims. Buy off the rack or order your own custom fit. Tshepo will even throw in some fashion advice on how best to wear them. And whatever you choose make sure to take a seat next to denim model Timmy who will want to be on Instagram with you.
Stop in at Impi Brewery Company, brewers of local craft beer and a great pizza joint (beware not to approach the owner if the place is booked for a function. He can be fierce).
If you've visited the boutique shopping complex 44 Stanley in Milpark you'll recognise elements of its cool and contemporary industrial aesthetic, as the two sites share a founder. The gardens of Victoria Yards are lush with herbs and medicinal plants and will soon include fruit trees. Linking the area to a number of other inner-city agricultural initiatives, there are also plans for a produce market in the future.
Opening hours are not regulated and many of the spaces are let to working artists so the best time to visit is on the first Sunday of the month when Victoria Yards artists throw open their doors to visitors.
Daville Baillie Gallery Victoria Yards
Victoria Yards, 24 Victoria Rd, Lorentzville
The Daville Baille Gallery showcases contemporary and classical art from emerging and established local artists. Originally launched in Norwood, their exciting new showroom at the new Victoria Yards development in Lorentzville shares space with artist st
Impi Brewing Co
16 Viljoen St, Victoria Yards, Lorentzville
Primal Spirits Distillery
Unit 5A Victoria Yards, 16 Viljoen Street Lorentzville
This gin distillery is tucked into the culturally rich location of Victoria Yards, a space for artisans and makers on the eastern side of the city located in a complex of restored industrial heritage buildings in the gritty suburb of Lorentzville.
Building 12, Victoria Yards, 16 Viljoen St, Lorentzville
Yol Bijoux Nomades
Victoria Yards, 16 Viljoen St, Lorentzville