A very brief history
Rust-en-Vrede was originally built in the 1840’s as a prison and police headquarters. It also served as a magistrate’s court. It is here that the first Village Management Committee meetings were held. In 1901, with the registering of Durbanville as a Municipality, the first council meetings were also held in the building.
In 1927 the building was sold to Mr Robert John Meneely, a clock maker. During this time the building was converted into 4 semi-detached houses, The Oaks, Ingle Nook, My Vreugd and The Retreat, with the Meneely’s occupying the main section. Mr Meneely was a charming, but eccentric gentleman, who during his retirement years, filled the house with a great number of antique clocks, all ticking away lustily!
After the demise of Mr and Mrs Meneely the Municipality bought the property from the Meneely estate in 1978 and the slow process of restoration began. It was during this time, in 1981, that the Durbanville Cultural Society was officially established. It was decided that, in conjunction with the council, the Durbanville Cultural Society would run the building as an Arts and Culture centre. The complex now houses a Gallery, Clay Museum, various Art Studios and the coffee shop, YOCO Eatery.
The building was declared a national monument in 1984.
The Art Gallery
The well-established Rust-en-Vrede Art Gallery showcases works of art by established and emerging artists. There are three exhibition spaces at Rust-en-Vrede.
The main gallery consists of two rooms and are referred to as Salon A and Salon B. Salon C is in the entrance room, which is a more informal space used for small solo- or group exhibitions.
Gallery Hours are Monday – Friday 09:00 – 16:00 and Saturday 09:00 – 13:00 ( the exhibitions change monthly and are freely open to the public.) Artists who wish to exhibit at Rust-en-Vrede are requested to submit work and a short proposal to the Gallery Management.
The members serving on this committee are nominated at the Annual General Meeting in August. They meet monthly to assess new applicants for exhibitions with the curator.
The Rust-en-Vrede Team
Meet the team behind the scenes