Live Auction, 21 October 2013
About this Item
Duffey, AE. (2008) Anton van Wouw: The Smaller Works, Pretoria: Pretoria Book House. Another cast from the edition is illustrated on page 104.
According to tradition this is a representation of the old President as he witnessed the departure of the first Boer commandos from Pretoria station to the front in Natal ...
In the best Massa castings of this small sculpture it is again the fine detail which impresses the beholder: the texture and neat row of buttons on the waistcoat, the pocket watch and chain, the coat buttons on the back of his frock coat and the finish of the face, especially the bags beneath the eyes of the President, the sparse beard, the crooked pipe in the mouth and his well-shaped ears. The light brown patina of the Massa castings heightens Van Wouw's use of light effects to emphasise certain forms.
There are relatively few castings of this small sculpture and Van Wouw seems to have made them with the approaching Voortrekker centennial in 1938 in view.
Duffey gives the date of sculpture as 1937, citing Dr MJ Cohen’s book on the sculptor published in 1938 in which he describes Van Wouw at work on this sculpture.
Purchased directly from the artist and thence by descent