Hidden in the beautiful suburb of Kloof, is a magical place that encapsulates the relationship between humans and landscape. A place where art, man and nature intertwine. Recently opened, the 20-acre AmmaZulu Gardens and Sculpture Precinct, which houses in excess of 120 marvellous sculptures by artists from all over the world between its lush trees and plants, is the perfect weekend outing for young and old alike.
The vision of sculptor Peter Amm who joined forces with renowned South African sculptor Andries Botha, the AmaZulu Gardens were originally part of a cattle farm. Over the past 70 years the farm has been converted from grassland and blue gums into a world of fantasy and dreams where artistic expression has no labels or barriers. It is Peter’s belief that even junk has its own beauty and presence, which is evident in the many objects and sculptures (made from recycled ‘junk’) that are scattered around the garden.
The sculpture precinct consists of five ethereal galleries splendidly set off by the architectural backdrop of mammoth trees and tropical palms. You’ll wander along footpaths through luxurious undergrowth and, every now and then, you’ll come across a whacky or even slightly sophisticated sculpture amidst all the greenery. It’s an experience that takes time to absorb, so we suggest you take a morning or afternoon off to head off and explore this outlandish setting that promises to brighten up your day.
A permanent exhibition by Andries (curated by Janine Zagel and Jessica Bothma) comprised of his personal collection of sculptures entitled ‘…it takes everything’ is housed in a magnificent three-storey-high, 600-square meter space. The work explores and helps one understand the complex, yet inspiring human journey that we as South Africans have lived through over the past 40 years.
The exhibition is also located above a delightful coffee pavilion boasting the Ping Pong Café – an informal space to relax and have a delicious light meal, yummy cake or pastry or simply a refreshing cup of tea served by creative consultant and general manager of the gardens and precinct, as well as owner of the café and chef, Hein Lottering.
The AmmaZulu Gardens and Sculpture Precinct, located between 84 and 88 Kloof Falls Road, is open from Friday to Sunday, 10am to 3pm. You don’t need to phone ahead or make a booking, but if you want to book a picnic or have any special requests, you can contact Hein on 083 244 7565 or [email protected]
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Photos by: Gerald Botha Photography