The Adlou Art Gallery at Hartebeespoort Dam, some 45 minutes’ drive from either Johannesburg or Pretoria, is by no means ‘ordinary’.
Already a destination of choice for many Gautengers, Adlou, tucked in among a cluster of shops and cafés overlooking the scenic Transvaal Yacht Club, speaks volumes for the philosophy of Louise Boshoff, the woman behind it all.
The fact that the art on exhibit is among the best available in South Africa – if not in the world – is merely the crowning glory of this venue.
Louise, daughter of Adriaan Boshoff, widely regarded as one of SA’s greatest artists, has chosen to turn away from the ritzy, city-based gallery concept as, she says, this “up-market ambiance” so typical of art galleries often has an intimidating effect on people.
“In stead of representing many artists as I did in the days when I had a gallery in Pretoria,” she says, “I limited myself to just a handful here at Adlou.
“My father’s work is unique; he is truly one of the great modern impressionists. I have a good selection of his art, from small pieces to canvasses big enough to cover walls!”
Adriaan Boshoff is not the only impressionist. Louise spent many years searching for another artist of the caliber to complement her father’s work, and she eventually found him in the guise of Branko Dimitrov, a Serb who has been living in South Africa for more than ten years.
Adlou is also a major outlet for Tienie Pritchard, one of the best-known sculptors in the country and Louise says she still has her sights set on a handful of other artists among them the expressionist Carla Louw.
“Yes, I know I don’t promote the variety of artists many other galleries have. The fact is, I prefer to promote artists who, in my opinion, are the very best in their league in this country, if not in the world.”
She says visitors from all corners of the world “flock to Adlou because of the quality of work” displayed at the gallery.
Quality art, she says, “doesn’t always come cheap”: A large Adriaan Boshoff can set you back hundreds of thousands of rand but, as many earlier buyers will testify, his work is an investment that has international currency and is always appreciating.