Those who attended the ORT Online Art Auction last night were blown away. It was a night of art appreciation and the future education of South African youth was secured.

While this auction was held remotely, through Ariella Kuper’s delivery and the way in which she kept us all entertained, we felt connected. Ariella explained each piece in-depth, detailing how the artist incorporated emotion into the art and the medium used in each piece. Many of the artists came from South Africa as well as North and South America, where history abounds and is ripe for the telling.

Baruj Salinas, an American native of Cuba, was one of the established artists in our lineup. A large part of his artistic output consists of collages and paintings depicting architectural motifs, landscapes, and organic shapes that dissolve into abstraction. Additionally, Jaco Sieberhagen is a South African artist whose sculptures can be found in many countries around the world, such as England, India, China, Australia, Switzerland, Holland, and Taiwan, but he has also produced large works in South Africa. We are honoured to be graced with the works of such distinguished artists.

Among the highlights of the night was the sale of one piece for R350 000 ($23 308,63). Elizabeth Balcomb created this piece specifically for the ORT Art Auction. The piece titled ‘Young Girl’ demonstrates the connection between the human and animal world, and it suggests that identity can be fluid, beautiful, mysterious, and that consciousness is a condition shared by both species.

We raised a total of 1,1 million rands. Our thanks go out to all participants and bidders. Money raised from the event goes towards the education of the youth in South Africa. In addition, the artists receive a percentage because, during these circumstances, we need to take care of our artists. The money is not only for SA but for World ORT projects run by ORT IC – Click here to see the ORT Art Catalogue

There is a concept called Onism, which refers to the idea that you can only experience a limited amount of the world. However, this feeling is not true and will never be true. The artwork that exists allows us to live. Through art, we transcend time and generations. Last night at the Art Auction, we witnessed this through Austin Neal’s Tree of Life. The piece represents the survivors of the camps at Kunda. Though we may never know all the joys or sorrows of this world, art exposes us to these emotions. In viewing the pieces, we gain a new perspective on the world. This is what ORT strives to achieve. To ensure that the next generation can produce art, technology, and scientific breakthroughs by educating them and transcending what we know now so that future generations can behold.


Art has been procured from South Africa, North and South America. Proceeds will benefit ORT South Africa, ORT SA CAPE and ORT International.


ORT South Africa concentrates on Skills Development, STEM subjects and Entrepreneurial Programmes.


ORT SA CAPE teaches and supports teachers in underprivileged communities in the Western Cape.


ORT International is working on cooperation projects teaching girls STEM in Ghana and helping refugees in Greece rebuild their lives through training.