Live Auction, 20 May 2019

Sold for

Lot 272
Walter Battiss; Abstract Composition

Lot Estimate
R 400 000 - 600 000
Selling Price

About this Item

South African 1906-1982
Abstract Composition
oil on canvas
50 by 60cm excluding frame


Gordon Mckintosh was a prominent Pretoria architect, responsible for the design of many iconic buildings in the city including the Pretoria Art Museum in Arcadia. On his sketches for the Modernist design for House Munro, he included a quote by the European architect Walter Gropius, which indicates his interest in the International Style and suggests both his architectural design motivation and, perhaps, his reason for acquiring this painting from Walter Battiss: “The ground plan … is a geometrical projection of its spatial idea – the organizing plan for moving within a house. The elevation, facade, is the result of that plan and not the starting point … Hence, no artificial symmetry, but a free functional arrangement of the succession of rooms.”1

Mckintosh was the president of the Transvaal Provincial Institute of Architects from 1936 to 1942 and received the Institute of South African Architects Gold Medal in 1968.



Gordon Mckintosh, purchased directly from the artist, mid-1960s.

Deneys Reitz.

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