The Bag Factory celebrates its silver anniversary with star-studded art auction at Absa Gallery.

Absa Gallery is proud to announce it will host the organisation’s 25th anniversary art auction on 17 November 2016.

The Bag Factory Artists’ Studios is one of Johannesburg’s leading visual arts organisations that has, for the past 25 years, given young artists a platform to flourish. During this time the Bag Factory has also become a valued partner in the Barclays L’Atelier art competition.

25, as the auction is simply called, will feature works from past and present Bag Factory artists, former participants in its visiting artists’ residency programme, former L’Atelier Award and Merit Award winners and stalwart South African visual artists, whose contributions add significant weight to the plethora of outstanding work that will feature at the auction.

These artists include luminaries Gordon Froud, Walter Batiss, William Kentridge, Norman Catherine and Roger Ballen.

Former L’Atelier winners include Pauline Gutter (2013) (Disgrace VI), Jaco van Schalkwyk (2013 Merit Award) (Vollig Richtig), Clive van den Berg (1987) (Untitled); former Bag Factory artists Helen Sebidi (By that time), Colbert Mashile (Plague) and Belinda Blignaut (When I wake up in my makeup) while current Bag Factory artists include Gail Behrmann (White Square 19) and Blessing Ngobeni (Waiting for New Africa). Works from the Bag Factory’s co-founders, David Koloane (Saxophone 6), and Sam Nhlengethwa (The Launch and Coal Shed) have also been included in the auction showcase.

Dr Paul Bayliss, Absa Art and Museum Curator, says the auction furthers the objective of both the Bag Factory and Absa with regard to enabling the careers of up and coming artists in South Africa.

“The Bag Factory auction is a platform for these talented artists to gain the visibility they need. It will be an exciting evening of engaging with the artists, growing collections and experiencing a myriad of remarkable works of art. The auction will bring these artists’ works to life, and once again highlight just how valuable art is as a commodity, said Dr Bayliss.

Artworks going under the hammer can be viewed at the Absa Gallery from 10 November 2016. Electronic catalogues of the works are available from Dr Paul Bayliss ( and Aysha Waja (

25 takes place on Thursday, 17 November 2016 from 19:00 to 21:30 at Absa Gallery, Absa Towers North,161 Main Street, Johannesburg