Marilyn Martin

30 May 2022
David Goldblatt and Marilyn Martin at the Tierney fellowship workshops, Michaelis School of Fine Art, 2016
30 May 2022

It is with great sadness that we acknowledge the passing of Marilyn Martin. A brilliant and astounding person, Marilyn had a long relationship with UCT, most recently as Honorary Research Associate at Michaelis School of Fine Art where she also lectured in visual and art history. 

Marilyn was a prominent figure in the world of South African art and culture. She studied architecture and taught in the Department of Architecture at WITS University before moving to Cape Town take up the position of director of the IZIKO SANG museum. Here she strove to transform the collection and to make the gallery more accessible. She was awarded the Legion of Honour of the Republic of France as an Officer in 2002. On retirement from IZIKO she became and energetic independent curator, teacher and writer, with books including Between Dreams and Realities - A History of the South African National Gallery, 1871-2017 in 2019, and a monograph on Michaelis professor and artist, Kevin Atkinson - Art and Life, due to be released in July this year.

In 2000 and 2010, Marilyn served on the panel for Dakar Biennale. I had the privilege of visiting Dakar with her in 2010. She was a dynamo of energy and life and in her fluent French, Madame Martin could coolly and elegantly organize anything; seemingly tough, but with a wonderfully kind and generous heart.

Go well Marilyn. We will miss you.