Times Live | Sean O’Toole:


Shortly after veteran auctioneer Stephan Welz recently knocked down the final lot at Strauss & Co’s day-long sale of collectable things at Cape Town’s Vineyard Hotel, senior art specialist Ruarc Peffers walked over to his colleague, Emma Bedford, and high-fived her. 

LIGHTEN UP: Ed Young’s ‘Arch’ sold for R852 600. On seeing the sculpture, Archbishop Desmond Tutu said to the artist: ‘I’ll send you bad dreams’. Image by: SUPPLIED

The pair had good reason to be upbeat.

The sale on March 16 grossed South Africa’ s leading auction house R50-million in sales as 84% of the 653 lots found buyers.

A treacly painting of a young Zulu woman wearing a ceremonial crown (isicholo) by Vladimir Tretchikoff fetched the sale’s highest price for a canvas work, selling for R3.1-million (including VAT and commission). But the 1956 painting, originally owned by Canadian mining baron Jack Hammell, was not the biggest ticket work…


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