Vladimir Griegorovich Tretchikoff (South African, 1913-2006) The Herb Seller
Lot 63
Vladimir Griegorovich Tretchikoff (South African, 1913-2006) 'Herb Seller'
Sold for £121,250 (US$ 203,799) inc. premium
Lot Details
Vladimir Griegorovich Tretchikoff (South African, 1913-2006)
'Herb Seller'
signed, inscribed and dated 'TRETCHIKOFF / S.A. / 1949' (lower right)
oil on canvas
110 x 90cm (43 5/16 x 35 7/16in).

Footnotes

  • PROVENANCE:
    Mrs A.S. East, Cape Town
    Jan F. W. Haak, Minister of Planning and Mines (1964-1967), Minister of Economic Affairs (1967-1970)
    Gifted to R. F. 'Pik' Botha, Ambassador to the USA (1975), Minister of Foreign Affairs (1977-1994)
    Gifted to Mr Brian H. Cohen
    A private trust

    LITERATURE:
    R. Buncher, Tretchikoff, (Cape Town, 1950), illustrated no. 4
    H. Timmins, Tretchikoff, (London, 1969), illustrated
    A. Lamprecht, Tretchikoff: The People's Painter, (Johannesburg & Cape Town, 2011), illustrated p.43

    The current lot is particularly significant as the first work by Tretchikoff to be shown in the South African National Gallery, when it was included in the exhibition 1910-2010: From Pierneef to Gugulective, a survey of a century of South African art. The work is seen as particularly significant for its socio-political resonances, which seldom surface in Tretchikoff's oeuvre. As Andrew Lamprecht elaborates, "The painting depicts a well-known 'character' in Cape Town, disenfranchised because of South Africa's race policies, which were expanding to devestating effect soon after Tretchikoff arrived in his adoptd land. Behind the direct gaze of the main figure are the torn posters of two political rivals: Smuts of the 'liberal' United Party and Malan of the apartheid-initiating National Party."

    Richard Buncher, in his 1950 publication, records the following of the sitter:
    "When this old Cape Coloured woman died shortly after the completion of this portrait, it was as if a landmark had been taken from Cape Town. For many years she had sold her knowledge of the healing properties of nature in a corner of the Grand Parade, once the site of Van Riebeeck's wooden fort, by then the scene of many a political gathering, all of which left her unmoved. Her place was taken by her daughter, and so the traditions of the past were handed down from one generation to another".

    Jan Haak was South Africa's minister of Economic Affairs in the late 1960s, after three years as Minister of Planning and Mines. R. F. "Pik" Botha was South Africa's ambassador to the USA in 1975 and was made Minister of Foreign Affairs in 1977.

    BIBLIOGRAPHY:
    R. Buncher, Tretchikoff, (Cape Town, 1950)
    A. Lamprecht, Tretchikoff: The People's Painter, (Johannesburg & Cape Town, 2011), p.43

Saleroom notices

  • IMPORTANT NOTICE: The South African Heritage Resources Agency (SAHRA) has declared this lot a work of national importance and has declined a permit for its export. Therefore it is not subject to VAT on either the hammer price or the buyer's premium. The lot will be available for viewing at the Everard Read Gallery in Johannesburg. Payment for this lot may be made in Sterling in London or in South African Rand through our Johannesburg office using the published rate of exchange on the date of the auction. Collection must be made through our Johannesburg office. Please contact the department for further information.
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