• Emma Bedford

    Emma Bedford

    Emma Bedford was Senior Curator at the South African National Gallery for 25 years, during which she curated many exhibitions of major artists such as Maggie Laubser, William Kentridge and Marlene Dumas. She developed the collection by driving the acquisitions of works by established artists as well as younger art stars like Moshekwa Langa, Nicholas Hlobo and Zanele Muholi. Bedford was the first Director of Goodman Gallery Cape where she worked closely with artists of the calibre of Robert Hodgins and Sue Williamson. She has developed an international profile through exhibitions curated for the Venice Biennale in 2001 and was the only South African curator invited to the International Curatorial Workshop at The Museum of Modern Art, New York in 2005. Bedford has 7 years’ experience as Senior Art Specialist at a leading South African auction house.
    emma@aspireart.net | +27 83 391 7235

  • Jacqui Carney

    Jacqui Carney

    Jacqui Carney graduated from Wits Art School with a BA in Fine Art. She joined a leading South African auction house where she became Head Cataloguer and Researcher, before being promoted to Art Specialist. She was involved in the entire ambit of client liaison, valuation, cataloguing, advertising strategies, design, clerking, telephone bidding and auction production. She has generously donated her time to the production and success of several charity auctions, such as World Wildlife Fund, Artist Proof Studios, Bag Factory and Wildlands.
    jacqui@aspireart.net | +27 71 675 2991

  • Ruarc Peffers

    Ruarc Peffers

    Ruarc Peffers began at Stephan Welz & Co in association with Sotheby’s where he progressed to become Director and Head of the Art Department. He studied at the University of Edinburgh graduating with a Master of Science degree in Modern Art: History, Curating and Criticism. He then joined the primary market with Blank Projects and the NGO field with the Visual Arts Network of South Africa. More recently he returned to the auction industry as Senior Art Specialist and Auctioneer for a leading South African auction house. He has worked on many local and international art fairs – most recently Frieze London and The Cape Town Art Fair and was also at the Goodman Gallery for a period. He regularly conducts charity auctions for Artist Proof Studios, ABSA, Art Angels, Bag Factory, the Cancer Association, Diane Victor, Lesley Perkes, Stop Sign Art Gallery, University of Stellenbosch and the Wits School of Art.
    ruarc@aspireart.net | +27 84 444 8004

  • Marelize van Zyl

    Marelize van Zyl

    Marelize van Zyl has worked in the local and international art market for 10 years, gathering an impressive resumé of curatorial and editorial projects, working closely with prominent South African and international artists. The former Associate Director of SMAC Gallery, she curated exhibitions on historical and contemporary South African and African art, and has edited and produced various art publications. Marelize has worked on numerous art fairs including; ARCO in Madrid, The Armory Show in New York and ARTISSIMA in Turin, establishing relationships with many local and international institutions. She has consulted for corporate, public and private collections. Marelize holds a Masters of Art in Visual Studies from Stellenbosch University. In 2010, she was appointed as a researcher for the publication, Visual Century: South African Art in Context. Marelize was recently invited to be a counsellor for the Zeitz MOCAA Curatorial Training Programme.
    marelize@aspireart.net | +27 83 283 7427


About Aspire Art Auctions

Aspire Art Auctions was founded in 2016, and quickly became a leading South African auction house. Highly regarded for its innovation and forward-looking approach, Aspire focuses on the best quality art produced on the African continent. It is THE destination for international collectors to buy and sell the most important modern and contemporary art from Africa.

With a selective approach to curating auctions, Aspire is a dynamic and progressive auction house, associated with the finest, critically-engaged art. Conceived as a cultural organisation, our passion for art and the cultural legacy of South Africa and the continent at large underpins our values and goals. We support inclusivity and accessibility for all.

Our innovative and intelligent approach to art and collecting ensures we present sales of the foremost art available in the secondary market, and our clientele rely on our superior knowledge and expertise. By concentrating on smaller auctions and offering fewer lots of higher quality, we ensure that astute collectors know that acquisitions from Aspire’s auctions provide better longevity and prospective returns.

We produce industry-leading catalogues, bespoke events and curated exhibitions, and our consulting services ensure the best insight and understanding when making a purchase or sale. In addition, we continue to be the only fine art auction house in South Africa to voluntarily pay royalties to living South African artists whose work sells on our auctions, as part of our ethical commitment to the art industry and the national cultural legacy. With offices in Johannesburg and Cape Town, we conduct two live auctions per year in each venue, and four online auctions per year.