Did you know?
The first Karoo artists were the San, whose engravings and paintings are up to 10 000 years old.
The Karoo, a semi-arid area that covers over 400 000 square kilometres, is an endless source of inspiration for writers, poets and painters. The small towns of the Karoo attract many artists. Using various media, they work to capture its sense of place, inspired by its history, people and geography.
Over the years, the town of Oudtshoorn has developed a reputation for, among other things, its commitment to promoting art and artists. At the forefront of this is Art Karoo, an Oudtshoorn art gallery that features work created by artists living and working in the area.
In fact, the community's involvement in this Karoo art gallery has been a major part of its success: 'it thrives on their sense of ownership and participation,' says gallery owner and artist, Dr. Janet Dixon.
The Art Karoo gallery represents a number of leading local artists, such as Lisl Barry, Hein Botha, Ina Marx and Etienne Van Zyl, amongst many others. The gallery also supports young artists from the area who are finding their way in the art world. Its exhibition programme is made up of a dynamic and varied mix of artists, subjects and themes and is a welcome commercial outlet for Karoo artists and art lovers.
Art Karoo is also a returning contributor to the Klein Karoo Klassique and the Klein Karoo National Arts Festival, 2 major events on South Africa's arts and entertainment calendar. The gallery also facilitates Art Karoo Outdoors, outdoor 'art therapy' that aims to instill a sense of the Karoo's tranquility in its particiants. The gallery provides the teaching, paint, canvasses and brushes, while the Karoo's landscape and fresh air provide the rest.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Tel: +27 (0)44 279 1093
How to get here
Art Karoo's address is 107 Baron van Reede Street, Oudtshoorn’s main street.
Best time to visit
Art Karoo is open seven days a week. Monday to Friday from 9am to 9pm; and Saturday and Sunday from 9am to 2pm and 4pm to 9pm.
Tours to do
Art Karoo offers half-day, full-day or three-day tours of the area, which can be individually tailored according to your interests. You can learn more about the area’s special vegetation, view San rock art, taste locally produced wine, chocolate, cheese and olives or visit the Cango Caves.
What to eat
Art Karoo’s café serves delicious vegetarian food including salads, pastries, soups and more, as well as coffee and an assortment of teas.
Regular sketching sessions, open to the public, are held at the gallery. See their website for details.