Art Times |By Michael Coulson
With 75 of the 119 lots of SA art (63.0%) sold at Stephan Welz & Co’s auction in Cape Town last week, it was a much better result than the firm’s recent Joburg sale. On the downside, though, only half the top 10 estimates sold, including only one of the three seven-digit works, so a gross of about R7.7m (including fees) was a less impressive 53.2% of the low estimate of about R14.5m.
Top price was R1.34m for a Pierneef landscape (estimate R1.3m-R1.8m). Of the other top estimates that did sell, Eleanor Esmonde-White’s portrait Grace fetched R549 000 (R500 000-R900 000), an Adolph Jentsch landscape R392 000 (R350 000-R600 000), a Maggie Laubser landscape R336 000 (R300 000-R500 000) and Anton Smit’s sculpture Transections R258 000 (R380 000-R700 000).
Of other featured works, Fred Page’s Mothers of Nostalgia (detail, inside front cover) went for R280 000 (R250 000-R450 000) and another Smit, Burning Man (index page), for R157 000 (R140 000-R250 000). Prices of interest also include R426 000 for Anton van Wouw’s bronze General de Wet (R150 000-R250 000), R246 000 for a Lucas Sithole sculpture (R180 000-R350 000), and R213 000 for 42 small painted tiles by Johannes Phokela (R150 000-R250 000).
Of the most represented artists, two of four Pierneefs and one of four Hugo Naudes sold. On three each were Walter Battiss and Pieter van der Westhuizen (all sold), Debbie Bell, Paul du Toit and Terence McCaw (two each), Esmonde-White (one) and William Kentridge and Francois Krige (none).
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