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Yolanda Meyer, Bongi Mphuti, Alexio Motsi, Johan Swart


South Africa

Dates of visit

2 to 6 July 2018

Purpose of visit

The Architecture Archives at the Department of Architecture, University of Pretoria (UP), has been involved in a variety of conservation, education and research projects over the last few years, including endeavours that continue to be of interest within Dutch-South African shared heritage discussions. Building on a series of discussions in 2017 between the Architecture Archives at the Department of Architecture, University of Pretoria (UP), the Museum Association of South Africa (SAMA), and the Heritage Agency of the Netherlands (RCE), four South African stakeholders in cultural and heritage activities will now visit The Netherlands.

The purpose of the visit will be to get acquainted with Dutch counterparts in the field of architectural archiving and how they fit into the broader conservation networks in the Netherlands. During their visit to the Netherlands, the guests will visit the National Archives of the Netherlands, the National Archives depot and restoration archives, the Cultural Heritage Agency depot, the Amsterdam City Archives, and Het Nieuwe Instituut. They will have the opportunity to expand their professional networks while engaging in professional discussion and knowledge exchange during a meeting at DutchCulture and Zuid-Afrika Huis. They will explore, with institutional and academic partners, the possibilities of future projects and collaborations including skills exchange workshops as well as collaborative conservation and research projects.


Yolanda Meyer is the Manager at Transnet Heritage Library, a library consisting of more than 200.000 digital railway images of the Transnet freight transport. Her next step is to archive still undiscovered technical drawings of the NZASM (The Netherlands-South African Railway Company or NZASM, a railway company established in 1887).

Bongi Mphuti is a senior librarian at Architecture and Built Environment Library, a gateway to research engagement and intellectual achievement in Africa. His career involves collection development, preservation of all information resources especially material relating to heritage – important since in his view the youth seemed to have lost their identity.

Alexio Motsi is deputy director of preservation at National Archives of South Africa. Its mission is to develop, preserve, protect and promote arts, culture and heritage.

Johan Swart is a lecturer at the University of Pretoria where he teaches history, conservation and design. He participates in heritage forums with stakeholders in the region and contributes to collaboration in the field through events and joint fieldwork projects. With an interest in archiving endeavours, he attempts to make information about the history of the South African built environment more widely available through the digitization, description and online dissemination of architectural and cultural-historical collections.