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The William Fehr Collection contains fine and interesting examples of paintings and decorative arts of special relevance to the Cape’s wealth of historical information concerning peoples and landscapes of early colonial South Africa.
The William Fehr Collection is exhibited at the Castle of Good Hope and Rust en Vreugd,(see below) both historic buildings.
The Castle, Cape Town’s oldest building, houses the component of oil paintings, furniture and decorative arts. Rust en Vreugd, a very fine example of colonial eighteenth century urban architecture, houses the art on paper – prints, drawings and watercolours.
The artefacts, including the art works, date from the late seventeenth to the early nineteenth century, the period of Dutch colonial settlement and, after 1795, the era of British occupation. The art works constitute a uniquely rich and important resource for many aspects of the history of the period.
The collection reflects the outlook and aesthetics of a single collector, William Fehr (1892–1968), and his social context, and so differs from most museum collections that are the result of selection by museum staff over an extended period. William Fehr’s private collection was first displayed at the Castle in 1952 during the Van Riebeek Tercentenary Festival. Here a large proportion remained on loan until the whole collection was acquired by the South African government in the years 1964–5 and then distributed between the Castle and Rust en Vreugd.
Buitenkant Street, opposite the Grand Parade, Cape Town 8000
Open daily 09h00 to 17h00
Closed on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day
Tel: +27 (0)21 467 7223