Prolific architect William (Billy) Grant (1879 – 1957) is best known for his impressive Art Deco office facades in central Cape Town. But his work is much broader than this. Bo-Kaap based town planner, Tommy Brümmer has set himself the task of finding as many of Grant’s buildings as possible and photographing them from unusual angles.
In the early years Grant was in partnership with Donald MacGillivray. Grant’s clients and buildings vary from Barclays Bank (now a picture framers) on Salt River Circle and insurance headquarters in central Cape Town, to schools, cinemas, hotels, flats and grand villas, such as John Garlick’s home on Muizenberg’s Main Rd which he designed in 1914, pictured.
Over the past two years Tommy has travelled around the Cape Peninsula looking for Grant’s buildings, which he will share with you. Unsurprisingly some have been demolished, while others re-purposed to make way for new, more appropriate uses.
Tommy has identified 39 buildings so far. He has been involved with town planning applications for five of them and that’s over the past 20 years.
This talk will appeal to anyone interested in Cape Town’s architecture, development and design styles fashionable 100 years ago, especially Art Deco and Cape Mediterranean.
To view click here
Summary W H Grant biography and a list of his buildings here
Form Follows Façade: The Architecture of W H Grant 1920 – 1932 by Dr Federico Freschi here
Heritage architect Dr André van Graan annually gives his fabulous Art Deco walking tour in central Cape Town for Culture Connect