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Durban Art Galleries

BAT Art Centre – Developing Talent

The BAT Centre was started in 1995 as an arts and culture community center designed to celebrate the art and culture of locals and to promote their talent and skill. Located in the small crafters harbor off the Victoria Embankment in Durban, this enterprising Art Centre has helped to created jobs for a variety of artists by sourcing talent and bringing it into the limelight, by imparting skills which help to develop that talent, and by developing markets where that talent can be showcased to best advantage. In doing so, the BAT Centre has become an excellent resource for creative people living in and around the city of Durban, the harbor and the Esplanade.

This community cultural centre recently celebrated its tenth year milestone – a landmark which was indicative of the projects success. From humble beginnings this brilliant concept has grown to showcase the most exceptional art and performing art available on a daily basis. A number of careers have been grown from these relatively humble beginnings, such as those of local musicians Madala Kunene and Busi Mhlongo. Today the centre runs a number of programs designed to impart the needed skills and information to those who are artistically or musically inclined. In doing so, this community centre provide possible employment for thousands of up and coming artists.

One such program is the BAT Centre Artists in Residency (AIR) Program which teaches 50 selected students a variety of skill for one year on an annual basis. Thus far the program has been running for three years and it has helped to equip the students with the skills and knowledge needed in order to earn a living from art or music. The program focuses on either visual art or music and music students can learn such things as music theory, general musicianship, world music, keyboard skills, music business, music technology and practical study of music. Art students can learn drawing, painting, silkscreen printing, printmaking, sign writing, ceramics and business skills.

The BAT Centre provides the ultimate showcase for a variety of local talent and in this way helps many artists to kick-start their careers. Why not support local talent and visit the BAT Centre. You won’t be disappointed.