Sun, 25th Mar 2018 18:00

Historic, Modern & Contemporary Art

Lot 158
Lot 158 - Conrad Botes (South Africa 1969-)


Conrad Botes (South Africa 1969-)

acrylic on canvas

Artwork date: 2011
Signature details: signed with the artist's initials and dated

Sold for R170,520
Estimated at R80,000 - R120,000

Condition Report


Please note, we are not qualified conservators and these reports give our opinion as to the general condition of the works. We advise that bidders view the lots in person to satisfy themselves with the condition of prospective purchases.


acrylic on canvas

Artwork date: 2011
Signature details: signed with the artist's initials and dated


200 x 352 cm


This massive canvas by Botes is a very striking combination of elements typical of this ‘Post-Pop’ artist. Famous, with collaborator Anton Kannemeyer, for his founding role in the creation of the counter-cultural ‘Bitterkomix’ series of comics and postcards, Botes has more recently established himself as an artist in his own right. Working across different media, but mostly in lithographs and sculpture, he brings the same irreverence and black humour to most of his work that he first developed in the comics.This work shows the forensic attention to detail in the background landscape that would be shown in a later series of lithographs in 2014. The landscape is peopled by a small army of comic-type characters acting out various narratives, all of which have human depredation in common: here two men bury a third alive, fights happen, military training and the disciplining of prisoners are carried out. Above all of these violent and depraved tableaux, a huge, malevolent figure (a self-portrait) squats menacingly, as if about to defecate.The implication, given the work’s title, that the origin of the world is ultimately petty and abject is unmistakable. Botes’ dark vision focuses on the evil and violence we visit on each other, in a universe that seems uncaring, presided over by a god-like figure who seems far from benevolent. While it has the acidic colours and comic sensibility of its pop-art idiom, the strength of the artist’s imagination produces a work reminiscent of Hieronymous Bosch in its gravitas and power to disturb.

James Sey

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Auction: Historic, Modern & Contemporary Art, Sun, 25th Mar 2018

Aspire Art Auctions brought a unique offering to their second auction in the Cape allowing buyers to add quality and rarity to their collections.

Headlining the success of the auction was as a rare intaglio by Alexis Preller, Gold Angel (Arêté), which sold for R4 638 400. The piece was part of Preller’s last body of work shown at the Goodman Gallery in 1975, and took its place alongside the sale of his mid-period work, the exquisite small study Still life with Vase and Carved Head, which sold for R811 720. Other auction highlights included work by contemporary artists Robert Hodgins, Athi-Patra Ruga, Zander Blom, and Penny Siopis and sculpture by Deborah Bell, Willem Boshoff, Wim Botha, and Amadlozi alumnus Sydney Kumalo.


Friday 23 March 2018 | 10 am – 5 pm
Saturday 24 March 2018 | 10 am – 5 pm
Sunday 25 March 2018 | 10 am – 3 pm

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