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Bloemhof Girls' School – Stellenbosch University Museum
Stellenbosch, Western Cape

Folkert Wilko HESSE: Architect

Date:1907
Type:School
Status:Extant

 


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Coordinates:
33°56'06.90" S 18°51'46.53" E Alt: 117m

The building in which the Stellenbosch University Museum is housed was erected in 1907 as Bloemhof Meisieskool (Bloemhof Girls' School). The architect FW Hesse designed the building in the Flemish Renaissance Revival style. It was a popular style in the second half of the 19th century which saw a global renewed interest in the Renaissance. Only a few examples of this style can be seen in South Africa. The exposed brickwork was a deep red. When the building was renovated in 1991, it was painted in a colour similar to that of the brickwork. White was also used to highlight detail in the building to achieve a polychromatic effect which emphasises the stylistic and structural elements of the style.

After 1960 the building housed the Laerskool Bloemhof (Bloemhof Primary School), and thereafter Laerskool Eikestad (Eikestad Primary School). In 1986 Stellenbosch University purchased the building. It was put to diverse uses for approximately three years. In 1989, thanks to a substantial financial contribution by Sasol, renovations started to convert it into a university museum. The renovated complex which for a time was known as the Sasol Arts Museum, was officially opened on 3 October 1991. The museum now houses a number of art collections as well as a cultural-historical and anthropological collection.

(Stellenbosch University Museum. Accessed 2019 05 02)

Transcript of the National Monuments Council plaque:

BLOEMHOF
DIE MEISIESKOOL BLOEMHOF, AANVANKLIK GENOEM
GIRLS' PUBLIC SCHOOL, IS OP 26 JANUARIE 1875 GEOPEN
IN DIE OU GIMNASIUMGEBOU, TANS DORPSTRAAT 120.
OP 2 JULIE 1907 HET DIE SKOOL HIERDIE GEBOU BETREK
WAT PAS VOLTOOI WAS EN AS EKLEKTIES GETIPEER KAN
WORD. DIE OPENINGSREDE IS GELEWER DEUR DIE
STELLENBOSSER JOHN X. MERRIMAN WAT EERSTE
MINISTER VAN DIE KAAPKOLONIE WAS.
Raad vir Nasionale Gedenkwaardighede

BLOEMHOF
BLOEMHOF GIRLS' SCHOOL, ORIGINALLY CALLED GIRLS'
PUBLIC SCHOOL, WAS OPENED ON 26 JANUARY 1875
IN THE OLD GYMNASIUM BUILDING, AT PRESENT N0. 120
DORP STREET. ON 2 JULY 1907 SHORTLY AFTER ITS
COMPLETION THE PRESENT BUILDING, AN EXAMPLE OF
THE 'ECLECTIC STYLE', WAS OCCUPIED. IT WAS OPENED
BY THE WELL-KNOWN STELLENBOSCH FIGURE, JOHN X.
MERRIMAN, PRIME MINISTER OF THE CAPE COLONY.
National Monuments Council
1979

SAHRIS catalogue:
Old Bloemhof Girls' Primary School, 52 Ryneveld Street, Stellenbosch
Site Reference: 9/2/084/0147
Declaration Type: Provincial Heritage Site
Gazette No: 5170
Gazette Date: Friday, June 25, 1976
Notice No: 1065
Notice Date: Friday, June 25, 1976


Writings about this entry

Richardson, Deidré. 2001. Historic Sites of South Africa. Cape Town: Struik Publishers. pg 141
Stellenbosch Town Council. 1979. Stellenbosch three centuries : official commemorative volume. Stellenbosch: Stellenbosch Town Council. pg 129 ill, 309, 310, 311, 312, 360, 366, 397, 397