A rare opportunity for a guided tour by Tracey Randle, the heritage consultant, who was involved from the start for this new, multi-layered and beautifully designed, permanent exhibition. Tracey is highly regarded researcher and archivist of Cape history. She has cleverly choreographed a fascinating story, ranging from today’s celebrities with Huguenot ancestry (eg actress Charlize Theron and tennis champion Roger Federer), to themes of religious freedom, land ownership, international refugees and homesickness, that relate to the Huguenots arrival in the Cape after Louis XVI’s banning of the Protestant religion in France, 1685.
Beautiful historical objects, are beautifully positioned, alongside with contemporary new design – furniture, Christening robes, ceramics, model ships, portraits and even a small Bible smuggled in the loaf of bread for the escape out of France. Tracey will talk us through their significance and selection, along with Kegan Benans, of the Museum.
This stunning new exhibition is housed in the main Saasveld building, the elegant 18th century former home of Baron Willem Ferdinand van Reede van Oudtshoorn. We’ll also be shown round the garden, with its new landscaping and indigenous plants, which leads to the hugely symbolic, large monument itself, standing proud at the end of Franschhoek’s main street. We start in the annex, with the old, object display and finish at the small delightful perfume museum (the first in South Africa).
Cost R250, pay pre 1 June, then R350 including entrance fee and info pack.
Venue: Franschhoek Huguenot Memorial Museum, Lambrechts Street, Franschhoek, Western Cape, South Africa, 7690 (an hour’s drive from Cape Town).
Do join Kate Crane Briggs, who has curated this event, afterwards for lunch at Hey Joe, which is also new. It is six minutes drive from the Museum, in the countryside on the way to Cape Town. (The most expensive dish is R130 and the food is outstanding.