Visbaai, Hermanus signed and dated 'F. Krige '41' (lower right) oil on canvas 31.5 x 49.5cm (12 3/8 x 19 1/2in).
PROVENANCE: The collection of Dr A.C. Bouman Thence by direct descent to the current owner
Visbaai, the Old Harbour at Hermanus, used to draw large crowds of locals who would come to watch the fishermen returning from sea with their catch. The fish were then cleaned and sold on site or salted and packed into crates to be transported elsewhere.
The present work shows the bay during a less frenzied moment, perhaps at the end of the day. Seagulls duck and dive above the fishermen's cast-iron roofed huts and boats stationed on the slipway, while a solitary fisherman carries his quarry home, the bokkom stands for drying salted fish beyond. The town of Hermanus, initially called Hermanuspietersfontein, originally sprang up around this inlet, thanks to an abundant and varied supply of fish.
Professor A.C. Bouman was a well-known art critic and author of Painters of South Africa (Cape Town, 1951). For another early work also depicting Visbaai, see Fishermen Carrying Their Boat (Bouman 1951, p94).