The Athenaeum Art Gallery
ARTS, CULTURE & HERITAGE - The Athenæum, declared a national monument in 1980, stands on Belmont Terrace, flanked by historic Port Elizabeth streets, Military Road and Castle Hill in the suburb of Central near the port. The building is one of the few examples of the classical style of architecture in the city and was designed by George William Smith.
The creative industries in Nelson Mandela Bay have a home in the renovated Athenæum building complex – upgraded specifically to nurture and transform arts, culture and heritage in the city. Located in the historic suburb of Central, Port Elizabeth, within walking distance of all major city wide transport routes, the building serves as a nexus for creative thinking and pursuits, linking various public art and creative industry sectors.
The building is Nelson Mandela Bay’s renewed creative hub for showcasing Nelson Mandela Bay and the Eastern Cape’s art, culture, creativity and heritage offering. It offers a variety of spaces for performances, exhibitions, events, conferences, meetings, launches, shows, theatre and workshops, as well as studio and office space. The building has been guided by a collective association known as the Athenæum Club (now Council) – an open society of organisations dedicated to promoting and developing arts, culture and heritage for all the people of the city – for over 100 years.