Can companies use their art collections to generate a positive narrative with global impact?

The Standard Bank corporate art collection is one of South Africa’s most significant corporate assemblages with over 1,200 pieces of work mostly by local artists, such as that shown above. The collection itself is a statement of the importance of art in shaping our understanding of ourselves as a society and as individuals. In South Africa in particular, the arts are a powerful expression of our creativity, and play an integral part in generating a positive narrative with a global impact.

The bank’s mandate supports a wide range of initiatives that both nurture young talent and showcase this rich diversity through programs that include the National Arts Festival, Standard Bank Jazz, Standard Bank Young Artist Awards and Standard Bank African Art Collection at the University of Witwatersrand in Johannesburg.


Diana Munro is a Partner in Brunswick’s Johannesburg office, advising corporations on transactions, investor relations and issues management.


Image above: Steven Cohen, Untitled (c. 1985) A native of Johannesburg and a resident of Lille, France, Cohen is a visual and performance artist whose work is exhibited in collections around the world. In the above hand-colored silkscreen print, the image of a girl resembling depictions of Lewis Carroll's Alice in Wonderland character, is set against a backdrop that could be seen to represent old Apartheid South Africa.

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