national Arts Festival Banner

Tuesday, September 26, 2017


Eleven partnerships were honoured at the 20th Annual BASA Awards, partnered by Hollard and Business Day, during an arts-filled event.

These prestigious awards honour exceptional projects that demonstrate the positive and sustainable impact of dynamic business and arts partnerships. This year was also a moment for Business and Arts South Africa (BASA) to celebrate its 20th year, an important milestone for the organisation.

Twenty years ago, a partnership between several South African corporates and the current Department of Arts and Culture (DAC) saw the founding of Business and Arts South Africa (BASA). Over the past two decades, the association has grown to include a wide spread of different stakeholders including 126 business members, the creative sector, organisations within the Southern African region, and a growing slate of project-specific partners.

Winners in this year’s award categories provide inspiring and compelling insights into the role that the arts play in connecting people and enabling transformation – and the different ways that business can support this.

“The Awards this year demonstrate great partnerships and the power of ongoing sustainability. Once again it highlights the absolute need to ensure that the arts remain integral to our society – growing cultural capital and social engagement,” commented Michelle Constant, CEO of BASA.

“Hollard’s partnership with BASA is testament to the power of business and the arts working together,” added Heidi Brauer, Chief Marketing Officer at Hollard. “Fostering collaboration between business and the arts brings positive change and enables better futures: For artists, via the exposure that the Awards generate; for business, through the creativity engendered by the process of working together; and for society as a whole, through the conversation and engagement around the beautiful works that are produced.”

“The originality manifested in the arts is both an inspiration to businesspeople and an articulate demonstration of how creativity can enhance human interaction and social collaboration. Tonight has showcased just how successful this can be,” said Tim Cohen, Business Day Editor.

The 20th Annual BASA Awards, partnered by Hollard and Business Day, were held at Nirox Sculpture Park in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site against the stunning natural backdrop of the Khatlhampi Private Reserve. The day’s experience was inspired by this year’s theme, Disruption. The guests were treated to an experience from the moment they arrived at the venue, with memorable performances throughout the Sculpture Park itself. They were given the time to explore this remarkable space where nature meets art. The performances - in the form of activations – were provided by Buskaid, Moving Into Dance Mophatong, The Field Band Foundation, Olifantland and Vuyani Dance Company – all arts organisations which have benefited from the positive impact of business has had on art through collaboration.

To mark the invaluable contributions BASA has made to South Africa’s arts landscape over the last 20 years, five illustrators - Karabo Poppy Moletsane, Imile Wepener, Ndumiso Nyoni, Johan de Lange and Ben Grib - were commissioned to visually narrate some of the organisation’s most significant milestones. Each of the 20th BASA Awards trophies, which were given to the deserving recipients tonight, features one of these beautiful illustrations.

Special thanks were extended to everyone who has contributed to the growth and success of BASA over the last two decades including the DAC, BASA board members, founding CEO Nicola Danby and founding Chair, Mary Slack. Acknowledgement was also given to all the business and art organisations that have supported and nurtured arts and culture in South Africa.

This year’s judging panel, which comprised Gianni Mariano, co-founder and CEO of the Mastrantonio group of companies, BASA board member and BASA Awards Chairman; Dali Tambo, media and heritage-tourism entrepreneur; Mandie van der Spuy, arts consultant and BASA board member; Kojo Baffoe, founder of Project Fable and KayaFM presenter; Nicolette du Plessis, CEO of the Field Band Foundation; Theresho Selesho, Director, Business Development at Boondoggle SA and entrepreneur; Christina Kennedy, arts and culture journalist and commentator; and Ismail Mahomed, CEO of the Market Theatre Foundation, was also thanked.

“Today was a fitting and fabulous event for an organisation with 20 years under its belt! Thank you to everyone who supported it, and believes in the value of the arts!“ said CEO Michelle Constant.

For more information visit