Important South African Paintings, Furniture, Silver and Ceramics

Live Auction, 11 October 2010

Session Two
  • Cecil Skotnes; Still Life with a Bowl of Fruit and a Coffee Pot

Lot Estimate
ZAR 250 000 - 350 000

About this Item

South African 1926-2009
Still Life with a Bowl of Fruit and a Coffee Pot


acrylic on board
37,5 by 50cm excluding frame


Still life painting, a special genre in the artist’s career, allowed him to break away from his painted and incised panels in order to explore a more painterly approach to art. In addition, his Nordic heritage enabled him to find beauty in everyday objects and marry the elegance of Scandinavian design to the genre of still life. These paintings also evoke the legendary hospitality of Cecil and Thelma Skotnes in which the simple pleasures of good food, excellent wine and percolated coffee were shared with family and friends...

Still Life with a Bowl of Fruit and a Coffee Pot, demonstrates the ways in which Skotnes explored the European traditions of the still life genre. The bowl of fruit clearly owes a debt to Paul Cezanne’s painterly approach of broken brushstrokes that catch and reflect light. Notice how the artist creates depth through the considered placement of objects zigzagging back into space and then, in a more contemporary vein, brings our attention back to the surface by dividing the picture plane into flat areas of tonal colour. These warm tertiary colours and chalky whites create an atmosphere of repose and comfort.

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