Apartheid Museum Reopens!

The Apartheid Museum is finally re-opening, just in time for Heritage Month. Check out the press release below…


The Apartheid Museum celebrated their re-opening and viewing of the new Desmond Tutu Temporary Exhibition – Truth to Power, on Saturday 20th August.

VIP Guests were welcomed by the Gingoma Yase Africa marimba band while they enjoyed cocktails at the Ammil Gin Bar set up on the museum rooftop.

Guests then made their way to the museum auditorium where the WITS choir had everyone on their feet dancing. Keynote speaker Executive Mayor Mpo Phalatse, Museum Curator Emilia Potenza and Charlene Houston from the Tutu Foundation passionately addressed the audience about the Apartheid Museum and the new Tutu Exhibition. Museum Manager Vinolia Hlagwana and Museum Operations Manager Andre Hudson opened and closed the proceedings.

“We are delighted to be able to welcome visitors back,” says Emilia Potenza, Curator of the Apartheid Museum. “And if you are one of those South Africans that hasn’t visited the museum yet, make this important pilgrimage with your family now. It will profoundly affect your understanding of the painful journey we have travelled as a country and offer courage and hope for dealing with the challenges we face today.”

The WITS choir sang while they led the guests from the auditorium to the Hall of Gatherings where they enjoyed an energetic performance by singer Lloyd Cele and delicious canapes. Black Wines – the salute of celebrations sponsored wine for the event.

Emilia Potenza, Curator of the Museum then took the guests on a personal guided tour of the new Desmond Tutu Exhibition. Guests were visibly moved as they went through the exhibition.

“What a great man that really played a huge role in fighting for our democracy and fighting for the dream of a rainbow nation in South Africa. We do not ever want to forget what he stood for, what he fought for and it’s so important to preserve his history and his legacy for our generation and for generations to come, “commented Executive Mayor Mpho Phalatse “I am very grateful for the work of the apartheid museum in capturing all of that history. I look forward to bringing my own children here so they can learn about the Archbishop Desmond Tutu.”

© Marcos Martins

#LearnFromThePast #ChangeTheFuture

The Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, one of the top museums in the country, is celebrating its reopening after being closed during the pandemic.

The museum charts a century of South African history, beginning with the discovery of gold on the Witwatersrand in 1886, focusing on repression and resistance during the apartheid period, building up to the final showdown between the mass democratic movement and the apartheid state in the 1980s, and ending with the transition to democracy.

The date of the reopening celebration – 20 August – is an auspicious one as it was on the same day in 1983 that the United Democratic Front (UDF) was launched in Mitchells Plain in Cape Town. This was an umbrella grouping uniting hundreds of organisations around the country in the fight against the Tricameral Parliament and the common enemy of apartheid.

The museum also formally launched a new temporary exhibition:


Desmond Tutu & the churches in the struggle against apartheid

Curated by the Apartheid Museum in partnership with the Desmond & Leah Tutu Legacy Foundation, this state-of-the-art exhibition celebrates the life and legacy of Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu. After opening this year as a permanent exhibition at the Tutu Legacy Foundation in Cape Town, it is now on display as a temporary exhibition at the Apartheid Museum.

“I see it more as a pilgrimage than a visit to an exhibition,” says Father Xolani Dlwati, Dean of the Anglican Church in Johannesburg. “It ignites something within you to explore and reflect on what contribution you can make as an individual and collectively.”

The TRUTH TO POWER exhibition at the Apartheid Museum is currently open and runs until April 2023.

The Apartheid Museum’s current opening hours are Wednesdays to Sundays and public holidays from 9h00 to 17h00.

Adults: R150.00

Pensioners, students & children: R100.00

Learners: R55.00

Teachers: R60.00

Visit the Apartheid Museum. Learn from the past. Make a pledge to fight racism and discrimination wherever you may encounter it. Commit yourself to building our democracy. 

For more information & photographs of the Apartheid Museum & the Tutu exhibition, contact Emilia Potenza at 082 549 2505 or emiliap@apartheidmuseum.org

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