Writing Art History Since 2002

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January 28, 2011

Two paintings which previously shook the South African art market are to be offered for sale at auction again in March.

JH Pierneef’s masterpiece Extensive Landscape Northern Transvaal made auction history in 1985 when it became the first South African painting to break the one hundred-thousand rand mark, selling for R120 000.

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In 1995 Irma Stern’s Still Life of Delphiniums created a stir
when it broke through the R200 000 barrier for a 20th century South
African painting, selling for R209 000. This set a new record for Irma
Stern and was South Africa’s most expensive painting sold at auction
for over five years.

These two major works are now back in the market with presale estimates
of R10 000 000 — 15 000 000 and R10 000 000 — 12 000 000 respectively.
This staggering growth proves that art is a form of investment with one
of the highest returns. These two paintings are to be included in
Strauss & Co’s sale of Important Paintings, Furniture, Silver and
Ceramics on March 7 to be held at the Vineyard Hotel in Cape Town.

Strauss & Co, South Africa’s foremost auctioneers for South African
art, holds the record for the highest price ever paid for a South
African painting on home turf having sold Gladioli, by Irma Stern for R 13 368 000. In addition to Still life with Delphiniums,
the sale features five other major works by Irma Stern, totalling over R
40 million accounting for over 50% of the sale totals.

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