Aspire Art hosts 20th century and contemporary art auction in Mother City

Aspire Art’s upcoming live auction, boasting 20th century and contemporary art, will take place in Cape Town on Wednesday 14 September 2022. This much-anticipated sale will see a focussed collection of 81 specially selected works by some of South Africa’s most influential modern masters and renowned contemporary African artists currently working in the international art arena, come under the hammer.

Contemporary highlights include seminal works by William Kentridge, Robert Hodgins, David Koloane, Penny Siopis, Deborah Bell, Sam Nhlengethwa and Kemang Wa Lehulere alongside emerging stars Blessing Ngobeni, Troy Makaza, Zemba Luzamba and Atang Tshikare.

Penny Siopis, Untitled. Estimate: R250,000 to R350,000
William Kentridge, Landscape with billboard. Estimate: R1,500,000 to R2,000,000
Deborah Bell, Meditation 1. Estimate: R300,000 to R400,000

Collectors of 20th century modernism can look forward to rare and never before seen works by leading figures of the Amadlozi Group: Edoardo Villa and Cecil Skotnes. Other highly collectable works by the much-loved artists Walter Battiss, Fred Page and Judith Mason are also included.

Cecil Skotnes, Figure Composition. Estimate: R400,000 to R600,000
Edoardo Villa, Study for Confrontation. Estimate: R1,800,000 to R2,500,000
Fred Page, Tomorrow Belongs to Us. Estimate: R150,000 to R250,000

The auction features two specialist sections: Black Modernism and African Photography. Aspire has championed both of these collecting segments and remains committed to bringing key artists from these categories to market.

Prisoner, 1966. Estimate: R200,000 to R300,000
Pennies from Heaven, 1986. Estimate: R300,000 to R400,000
Mother & Baby, 1969 (detail). Estimate: R900,000 to R1,200,000

Leading the sale is an impressive large-scale drawing by Dumile Feni titled Mother and Baby created in 1969, the year just after Dumile left South Africa to go into exile. The drawing is a powerful example of Feni’s ‘London Period’ works which are considered poetically expressive and at times indirectly biographical.

Also included are significant works by other leading modernists Gerard Sekoto, George Pemba, Lucas Sithole and a particularly scarce painting by the prodigiously talented Julian Motau, who tragically died at the age of 20.

Zanele Muholi, Thulani I, Paris, ‘Somnyama Ngonyama’ series. Estimate: R150,000 to R250,000
Mary Sibande, Caught in the Rapture. Estimate: R180,000 to R240,000
David Goldblatt, A house-painter at home, Pretoria Street, Hillbrow. Estimate: R120,000 to R160,000

The photography section includes limited editioned, silver gelatin prints by celebrated documentary photographer David Goldblatt alongside incredible photographic works by the award-winning Mikhael Subotzky, Mohau Modisakeng, Kudzanai Chiurai and multi-talented Simphiwe Ndzube. Of note is a portrait by visual activist Zanele Muholi from the renowned Somnyama Ngonyama series which also showed at the Tate Modern in 2021 as part of the artist’s retrospective, as well as a striking image by multi-media artist Mary Sibande from her critically acclaimed Long Live the Dead Queen series, which also recently showed at the Lagos Photo Festival.

Good to know

Date: 14 September 2022
Auction viewing: 9-14 September 2022
Location: Aspire Art, 37A Somerset Road, De Waterkant, Cape Town
Enquiries: Call 021 418 0765 or send and email to ct@aspireart.net.

Click here to view the auction and download the catalogue.