Arts & Culture in Hermanus
Artists and writers have been inspired by Hermanus for its ‘champagne air’, the serenity of the mountains and the tempestuous sea for almost a century – making this a hub for arts and culture. Many famous artists and writers hail from Hermanus, Onrus and Vermont and today the arts and culture scene is as strong as ever. There are 23 art galleries and studios exhibiting works of every genre and medium, from paintings to ceramics and weaving to delicate stoneware.
Pick up an art route map at the Tourism Office in Hermanus to navigate your way to the galleries or studios of artists at work. A meander through the different styles and subjects of artists must be one of the most pleasurable ways to absorb the creative side of a place. Hermanus is fortunate to have several art “nodes” that encourage exploration.
The cultural heritage of Hermanus is encapsulated in a fascinating photographic exhibition on the Market Square in the historic De Wets se Huis. The house is a heritage site and it was the first school house, once situated next to the Dutch Reformed Church. In 1986 it was dismantled and moved, brick-by-numbered-brick, to its present site. The photographs depict the early years of the fishing village and its steady growth.
The Old Harbour is another heritage site where you can find things to do in Hermanus and besides accommodating the office of the museum curator, it houses an exhibition of marine life and fishing artefacts. The South African Shark Conservancy also has its office down in the Old Harbour.
The Whale House on Market Square provides whale watchers with an educational insight into these annual marine visitors. The exhibition includes a full whale skeleton and an audio presentation featuring the work of scientific-illustrator, Noel Ashton.
Hermanus culture includes an enthusiastic performing arts and music following with organisations like the Hermanus Music Society, OAK (Overstrand Arts/Kunste), the Kalfiefees, U3A (University of the Third Age), the Pro Musica Choir, the Hawston Dramatic Society and several dance studios providing regular performances in a variety of venues.
The seaside town, close to the Southern tip of Africa, will have you feeling culturally fulfilled and creatively inspired. No holiday is complete with a leisurely browse through a gallery or a dive into the culture and history of the town. Hermanus has an invigorating story that you won’t want to part with.