Modern, Post-War and Contemporary Art

Live Auction, 20 May 2019

Day Sale

Sold for

ZAR 136 560
Lot 157
  • Brett Murray; Africa Maquette
  • Brett Murray; Africa Maquette
  • Brett Murray; Africa Maquette

Lot Estimate
ZAR 50 000 - 70 000
Selling Price
Incl. Buyer's Premium & VAT
ZAR 136 560

About this Item

South African 1961-
Africa Maquette
signed and numbered 10/15
bronze and paint
height: 28cm


This is an artist’s model of Brett Murray’s painted bronze sculpture, commissioned by the Cape Town Urban Arts Foundation and JK Gross Trust, and installed on St George’s Mall in Cape Town. Murray’s self-described ‘stoic, mock-monumental African presence’ is composed of an outsized Nigerian ritual ancestor figure bedecked with yellow Bart Simpson heads. Murray conceived the work as a satirical comment on ‘converging cultural paradigms’ in post-apartheid South Africa. City officials initially vetoed the work’s installation, but later capitulated when the artist submitted an expert testimonial by Nigerian critic and intellectual Kole Omotoso. Murray subsequently won further public commissions, notably at the Cape Town International Convention Centre in 2002. ‘The great attraction of producing public artworks is that it gives artists an opportunity to reach a broader audience. A less obvious attraction is the chance it provides artists to work closely with highly skilled artisans, welders, moulders, bronze casters, fettlers, riggers and engineers.'1

Sean O’Toole

1. Brett Murray (2013) Brett Murray, Johannesburg: Jacana Media. Pages 273 and 274.


Brett Murray (2013) Brett Murray, Johannesburg: Jacana Media. Page 274, and illustrated in a photograph of the artist's Cape Town studio, page 35.

cf. Sophie Perryer (ed.) (2004) 10 Years, 100 Artists: Art in a Democratic South Africa, Cape Town: Bell-Roberts in association with Struik. Africa illustrated on page 265.

View all Brett Murray lots for sale in this auction

Other lots that might interest you
Frans Claerhout; The Shepherd
Frans Claerhout
The Shepherd
ZAR 250 000 - 300 000
William Kentridge; Phenakistoscope
William Kentridge
ZAR 80 000 - 120 000
Edoardo Villa; Abstract Plaque
Edoardo Villa
Abstract Plaque
ZAR 25 000 - 35 000
Gerard de Leeuw; Die Siek Kalfie/The Sick Calf
Gerard de Leeuw
Die Siek Kalfie/The Sick Calf
ZAR 200 000 - 300 000
Cecil Skotnes; Abstract Figure
Cecil Skotnes
Abstract Figure
ZAR 140 000 - 180 000
William Kentridge; Zeno II (Man and Woman)
William Kentridge
Zeno II (Man and Woman)
ZAR 400 000 - 600 000