The rare and expensive: Inside a fine art auction at Strauss & Co

Read Full Article Here

The show starts from the moment you walk into the exhibition space. Held in the impressive structure that is Brickfield Canvas in Woodstock, Cape Town, the Strauss & Co showroom is a marvel of sights: huge windows displaying 360º views of Cape Town’s city, lights, champagne, party dresses, and, of course, the incredible artworks that fill the walls.

Every corner turned reveals a new, spectacular work. Spot a Maggie Laubser to your right; round the corner and come face to face with Irma Stern’s Roses in a Chinese Jar, or a large and arresting Cecil Skotnes; Gerard Sekoto’s The Gossips huddle in the corner. And of course, the prize jewel, hanging next to two of 12 rare Thomas Bowler 17th-century oil paintings, Jacob H Pierneef’s Baobabs, which fetched a massive R5.1-million, the highest bid of the night.