19th Century, Modern, Post-War and Contemporary Art, Decorative Arts, Jewellery and Wine

Live Virtual Auction, 11 - 13 April 2021

19th Century, Modern, Post-War and Contemporary Art
  • Peter Clarke; Cockerel
  • Peter Clarke; Cockerel
  • Peter Clarke; Cockerel
  • Peter Clarke; Cockerel
  • Peter Clarke; Cockerel


Lot Estimate
ZAR 300 000 - 500 000

About this Item

South African 1929-2014
Cockerel

signed and dated 1.6.1960

oil on board
51,5 by 44cm excluding frame; 73,5 by 66,5 by 5cm including frame

Notes

This monumental image, painted with simplified geometric forms in a vibrant palette, creates a flattened picture plane through which the motif of the cockerel emerges dramatically. Clarke’s stylistic simplification of subject was a result of his prolific practice of sketching, refining the subject and distilling its essence. This, in conjunction with his abundant relief printmaking production, fostered a distinctive and immediately recognisable style.

The iconic image, enhanced by an impasto application of paint with sgraffito detailing, further imbues the subject with symbolic significance. Clarke’s early book collection included exponents of European modernism, including Picasso, which influence can be seen in the background brushwork and the dramatic Cubist geometric shapes. Clarke would also have been aware of the deployment of the cockerel as a symbol of male vitality and potency.

Provenance

Acquired from the artist by the current owner.

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