Blomdraer

a solo exhibition by Jackie Veldman
Share on email
Email
Share on facebook
Facebook
At Chandler House we love flowers in all their forms, and for Spring 2023, we are hosting an exhibition that is seemingly about flowers – but it really is about so much more. Through the medium of gouache, Jackie Veldman is shining a spot-light on the iconic flower-sellers of Adderley Street. Over the past year, Veldman has been getting to know each ‘Blomdraer’ (Afrikaans for Flower Carrier) from the market and their backgrounds and their unique stories. For this exhibition she asked four of the blomdraers to select a bunch of flowers, which she then later painted in her studio. We are delighted be exhibiting these still-life works for Spring. 
 
Please read on below about the artist’s project in her own words.
 
 

For all sales and inquiries please email or Whatsapp us.

(e): info@chandlerhouse.co.za
(t): +27 83 271 0029

Tucked away along a pedestrian lane and nestled between the Standard Bank and the Golden Acre Mall, lies one of Cape Town’s oldest and most iconic markets. Called the Trafalgar Place Flower market, it is most commonly known as the Adderley Street Flower market to locals. If you have had the pleasure of coming across this gem, you’ll soon realise that you are no longer in a busy street, but rather in a floral treasure trove; a place rich with culture and history.

The women and men who work here often stem from a long line of floral merchants who have passed on their knowledge to the generation of flower sellers below them. Some of the sellers in today’s market are fourth generation. They have called themselves “Blomdraers” – or ‘flower carriers’. But its not just flowers that they carry; the Blomdraers are also the carriers of knowledge in the flower business and each of them has their own story, history and heritage.

If you visit the market monthly, you’ll notice that the sellers have shifted. They have devised a rotational system where each flower stall gets a two month slot at what most call ‘the front row’ where they have access to the most foot traffic and a better chance of selling their blooming goods. The market is open 24/7 and during the evenings the front row stalls stay open for people passing by in case anyone wants to purchase a bunch of flowers on their way home from work.

Each flower seller has a telephone number whereby you can contact them and order a bouquet and have it delivered to your place of work or home. Payments can be made through EFT, credit cards or Snapscan. Perhaps before you buy your next bouquet, spare a thought for the flower sellers of Adderley Street.

Artist Statement:

Although many locals and foreigners frequent the market, very little is known about it’s history and heritage. Despite its rich history and cultural importance, the market’s story often remains untold. To this day, there is no plaque or board providing us with their story. This has left a gap in recognising and honouring the individuals who have shaped the market’s legacy. Through this exhibition, I hope to bring to light the individuals who make a living at Trafalgar Place and recognise their heritage. 

– Jackie Veldman

Click here to view other available works by Jackie Veldman

 
 
 
THE BLOMME

Randall’s Flowers

Gouache on Paper

42 x 47cm

R8 400 sold

Shafieka’s Flowers

Gouache on Paper

38 x 24cm

R6 500 sold

Claudia’s Flowers

Gouache on Paper

38 x 24cm

R6 500 sold

Edmund’s Flowers

Gouache on Paper

38 x 24cm

R6 500 sold

THE DRAERS

Shafieka’s affectionate moniker as the “baby of the market” may stem from her comparatively shorter time at the market. Although she is a 4th generation flower seller at the market, she started out selling flowers at a local Fruit and Veg City. Her mother-in-law asked her to take over the business at Trafalgar Place and she has been working there for the past twelve years.

 

Her husband, Abdul-Gamiet is also from a long line (4th generation) of flower sellers on his father’s side. Shafieka is lively and loves a good chat. When I was planning this show, she was busy working on bouquets for the then, upcoming Eid celebration, where many people flock to the market for bouquets for centre pieces on their tables.

Shafieka’s dedication and energy make her a force to be reckoned with. When asked if there was anything else she wanted to tell me, her response was, “I just love to sell flowers!”

 

You can contact Shafieka on 0791609708

Randall works together with Delia at her stand. Before working at the market he used to do events and would source his flowers from Delia. He tells me that the two of them have a very deep connection and get on well with one another.
“Everything is just all happening in time like a time capsule, I’m really happy I can be in this space. They’ve (the other flower sellers) allowed me in which is very rare, but they also know where I come from and they knew my mother and her heritage. My heritage came from here, however my heritage here broke away about 40 years ago and moved to the northern suburbs, as it was too complex here. My mom started the legacy here so I was born into the flowers.”

 

He chose a beautiful selection of blue and purple stocks for his bunch.

You can contact Randall through Delia on 0725593414.

Married for 26 years, Claudia married into the business and has been working at the market with Edmund for 25 years. The couple have such a lovely demeanor and you can see they love working and spending the day together at the market.
Claudia chose, a yellow, white and green theme for her range.

 

The bouquet includes, Casa Blancas, Eucalyptus, white and yellow Chrysanthemums, button Chrysanthemums and Masemolias. She loves the colour theme of the bouquet and Casa Blancas are her favourite flower because they last long and give off a lovely aroma.

You can reach Claudia on 0799199827.

I met Edmund while he was creating a bouquet of sunflowers for a customer.
Although quite shy Edmund, is a very friendly gentleman who shows a deep passion for his trade. Edmund chose an interesting combination of flowers for his bouquet. It consisted of cabbage flowers, red lilies, roses and chrysanthemums. “These are all the different flowers I like”.

You can reach Edmund through Claudia on 0799199827.

For all sales and inquiries,

please contact Chandler House:

info@chandlerhouse.co.za
+27 83 271 0029

 

Share this exhibition with your friends

or visit us at Chandler House, 134 Church Street, Bo-Kaap

 

Share on whatsapp
WhatsApp
Share on email
Email
Share on facebook
Facebook

Past Exhibitions at The Voorkamer Gallery