Brief History

Greatmore Studios was established in 1998 in the heart of Woodstock, one of Cape Town's most diverse and vibrant neighborhoods. It’s history, however, goes further back.

In 1982, the Triangle Arts Trust held its first international artists workshop in New York City. The trust is a UK-based organisation that initiates and facilitates an international network of artist-led workshops and residencies. The association with the Triangle Network affords artists access to information and opportunities to exchange ideas and skills with other artists around the world. Its initiator Robert Loder and South African veteran artist David Koloane then planted this model in Johannesburg and built what became the Bag Factory in 1991.


It all started with a Thupelo Workshop in Johannesburg in 1985, the first of its kind in Africa. In the late 1980’s, Jill Trappler, Garth Erasmus, Lionel Davis and Velile Soha set up Thupelo Cape Town. Following the success of the Thupelo workshops, based on the need in the artists' community for a permanent working space and with the assistance of Robert Loder, David Koloane, Sam Nhlengethwa and Isky Gordon, Greatmore Studios was born a few years later. Local artists moved into the space very quickly. The programming was shaped according to their needs and in 1999 the first residencies took place in Woodstock.

Governance and Management

Greatmore Studios Trust is a registered Trust (IT3597/99) and NPO (054-055-NPO). It is governed by the board of Trustees and the Deed of Trust.

Patrons - Isky Gordon

Honorary Board Members - Robert Loder, David Koloane, Lionel Davis, Jill Trappler

Board of Trustees - Sam Nhlengethwa, Estelle Jacobs, Henry Cronje, Garth Erasmus,

Graham Falken, Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi

The board of Trustees represents vast experience in the Arts and NPO governance:

  1. Sam Nhlengethwa is a prodigy of the Bag Factory in Johannesburg and has developed a highly successful global career as an artist. His example sets a precedence for what is possible.

  2. Estelle Jacobs was director of the AVA Gallery in Cape Town for many years and is very well connected.

  3. Henry Cronje is a partner in Solace Consulting - financial planning consultants for NPO’s.

  4. Garth Erasmus was one of the early founders and has a long association with Greatmore Studios and Thupelo Cape Town.

  5. Graham Falken brings experience as a director of CAP (Cape Arts Project) and is a partner in ZAG Consultants.

  6. Ndikhumbule Ngqinambi is a prodigy of Greatmore Studios, has attended workshops globally and spent eight months at the Schloss academy in Germany in 2013. He now has a successful and demanding career as an artist. He represents Thupelo and artists at the board level.

Greatmore Studios Trust was established in 1998 and registered as an NPO in 2007. It is governed by a board of trustees and an executive committee (honorary board) and is managed by a director and two full time project co-ordinator’s.

Twelve artists studios, an event space, a social courtyard space, a digital arts facility, an office, kitchen and forecourt are housed at 47 & 49 Greatmore Street, Woodstock, in Cape Town. Greatmore Studios also has a four bedroomed house in Observatory for accommodation of out of town visitors (participants in the various programs) and a mini bus for transport (used especially for outreach projects)

about us

Objectives of Greatmore Studios Trust

  1. Bulletto provide a studio environment and training in which artists can work freely and develop their creative abilities and professional skills and which provides the opportunity to build a professional practice in order to establish a career and/or employment;

  1. Bulletto provide opportunities in workshops for the exchange of practice and ideas amongst participants from different communities and different cultures, promoting mutual respect, skills development and conflict resolution;

  1. Bulletto make the arts accessible to new audiences and to involve various communities in the process of art making and the exhibition of art work in order to build capacity through innovative practice and combat poverty;

  1. Bulletto enrich artists practice by supporting global workshops and residency programs which enable South Africans to travel abroad and visiting artists to share their skills here; and

  1. Bulletto implement the fundamental operating philosophy of the Trust that the activities of the Trust should be based on shared decision-making and should have regard to the following principles:



improvement of the welfare of the beneficiary community

tolerance and mutual respect

Greatmore Studios is the ‘arts hub’ of Cape Town - the place where the unifying glue is creativity, the oasis where innovative people exchange ideas and are supported in their arts career development.

Watch the Greatmore Studios 2016 introduction video here:

Contact us:

Greatmore Studios

47-49 Greatmore Street

Telephone: 0214479699