Important South Africa and International Art

Johannesburg  |  4:00pm Mon 23 May 2016


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Lot 348

South African 1951-
Blind Fish IV
wild olive wood with braille text in escutcheon pins
height: 38,5cm; length: 74cm; width: 18cm

Sold for R 80 000
Including Buyer's Premium and VAT R 90 944

Estimate R 80 000 - 120 000

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Willem Boshoff decided to become a sculptor at age 14. At the time he was already serving an informal apprenticeship with his carpenter father, Martiens Boshoff. Although financially supported by his family during his studies at the Johannesburg College of Art, Boshoff had to make up for shortfalls by teaching part-time classes. This work traces its beginnings to a series of 13 metal sculptures, some fish-like in form, produced by the artist in a Parktown stable he rented for his popular night-time art classes. Years later he reinterpreted these forms into wood, producing two works in kiaat (African teak) with the assistance of his son, Martin. The Blind Fish series runs to nine sculptures in various wood types. This is the only work produced in wild olive. Each work additionally features a Braille text marking. The text here quotes a line from US rock band Nirvana’s song ‘Something in the Way’ (1991): “It’s OK to eat fish because they don’t have any feelings.”

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