The Bag Factory was founded in 1991 as one of the first independent art spaces in South Africa that made studios and exhibition spaces available to visual artists.
At the time, the aim was for mainly black artists from Johannesburg to profit from the Bag Factory’s resources and networks. Today the Bag Factory stands for inclusion and diversity, based on the principle of open and free access for everyone. Situated on the western edge of Johannesburg, the space includes 18 studios, workshops, and a gallery, where local and international artists work together. The Bag Factory also runs a diverse program of regular exhibitions, workshops, and community projects. As part of the Triangle Arts Network, the organization maintains a residency program that enables artists from around the world to come to Johannesburg, engage with local artists, and develop new, creative ideas together. The visiting artists open their studios for guests, give workshops, and exhibit their work at the end of their stay.