We have seen grain silos converted into residential schemes, including a student residential scheme in South Africa. Thomas Heatherwick has released imaginative proposals to convert grain silos along the waterfront in Capetown, South Africa into a contemporary art museum. South Africa has a growing art community, with a number of private galleries and the first major art fair being held only a few months ago in October 2013, at which 40 galleries and more than 130 artists displayed work.
Did this act as the catalyst for the current project? In November 2013, Heatherwick was asked to develop ideas to transform the historic grain silo complex in Cape Town into the Zeitz Museum of Contemporary Art Africa (Zeitz MOCAA) to display the modern African art collection of the German collector Jochen Zeitz. The project, in which the silos are themselves transformed into sculptural works of art, will provide 9,500 sq m of space over 9 floors, of which 6,000 sq m will be exhibition space and will be completed at the end of 2016.