Despite the Covid-19 pandemic having limited activities during 2020, the Durban Art Deco Society held its Annual General Meeting on 5 December, 2020 with some 20 members present.
The year had got off to a more optimistic start with the society hosting a French film production team led by Natacha Giler during 18-21 February. Natacha is a dynamic young producer/writer – in this case preparing a documentary on Durban’s Art Deco for the French TV “Arte” channel. She had a very interesting approach, taking into account history, demography and current views of ordinary people on our built environment. Final editing is in progress and we expect to receive a copy soon.
On 8 March committee members conducted a research walk for a proposed “Motown” guided walk event. A number of fascinating Art Deco buildings were noted in the city’s old motor town area. Information documents were prepared – but the Covid-19 curtain came down at the end of March, putting an end to the year’s group activities.
During the lockdown, Committee member Boaz Chaves continued his excellent research on present and past Art Deco buildings in the city. At this stage we have the bulk of a book prepared, and 2021 will hopefully see this publication coming to a head. Chairman Donald Davies prepared a presentation on Art Deco for the Johannesburg Heritage Foundation, and he presented this by Zoom on 1 August. Other activities through the year included responding to requests for information and comment, eg. regarding building alterations.