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South African Centre for Photography update

Geoff Grundlingh writes:

What an incredible month this has been for photography in Cape Town. The 'eye Africa' festival has been very well received and attended. The Monday night sessions at the Bio Cafe are bursting at the seams and there were more than 350 people at the launch party of the Centre for Photography. The jazz was great, the wine flowed and the founding exhibition is a wonderfully eclectic collection of images drawn from all the different photographic communities. The phone hasn't stopped ringing and there is a steady stream of viewers passing through. Staffing the Centre is a major problem and we must find volunteers to answer phones and manage the office. Robyn Rorke has been extremely efficient but she can only be there on a part-time basis. Full report on the party and thank yous to follow.

The Cape of Good Hope bank is feeling the financial squeeze like the rest of us and will regrettably not be supporting the first Cape Town Photographic Biennial scheduled for September. The Eastman Kodak Charitable Trust (USA) has donated $25 000 (R150 000) towards the street photography programmes for 1999. This is an incredible gesture and I hope you will all support Kodak in return. I will be sending them a detailed report on the incredible work Tracey Derrick's students have produced to date.

Centre for Photography events

On February 6 at the Agfa Amphitheatre, V&A Waterfront, at 8pm, the edited final version of the "live exhibitions" from the Bio Cafe meetings. We are going to show the best works from the series edited into a 50-minute audio-visual presentation. This audiovisual will be shown again at the Bio Cafe on February 22.

Another scoop for Cape Town: at the Bio Cafe on February 15, Werner Bischoff's son, who is in South Africa courtesy of the Arts Council of Switzerland, is presenting a video on the life and work of his father. There will be a panel discussion thereafter. 32 Kloof Street, 8.15pm.

Artslink turbocharged

From: TJ de Klerk

The arts, culture and entertainment website is being rezoned and turbocharged with information technology and a full-time webmaster.

Enter and you'll be offered two choices: Artzone, the South African arts and culture hub, running parallel with Powerzone, the hub of South African music and the largest South African music gig guide.

The technology, enhanced by Domein Internet Solutions, is turning's unique database of the South African arts and culture industry - events, news, people, facilities, organisations - into a fast, professional, user-friendly resource.

A media release sent to flashes on to Artzone's front page of headlines. It is distributed via e-mail to the media and to the Acemail database - members of the public who have subscribed to receive arts news. The release is also attached to the page of the relevant event, theatre, art gallery or organisation. The information is archived, a valuable service for journalists and research.

Among the first to benefit from the Artzone technology will be the SA Arts and Culture Calendar, the most up-to-date listing available, which gives details of almost 100 arts happenings around the country, including performance criteria for artists wishing to participate.

Currently an extensive nation-wide theatre and performance venue database is being compiled by webmaster TJ de Klerk. This can include schedules, maps, reviews, media releases, pictures, logos, technical information and even advice on where to dine or where to stay.

Artists, crafters, performers, actors and technical crew, anyone working in the arts and culture industry, will be able to sign themselves on to Artzone for free, listing their names and contact details. This feature has been very successful on Powerzone.

Artslink will continue its role which is to be the country's primary internet-based arts and culture resource, collating and disseminating information. All relevant parties are invited to contact the webmaster TJ de Klerk via e-mail or phone (011) 487-3689 or fax (011) 648-6191.

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