Mystery KZN businessman buys R2,7 mln Irma Stern painting

2011-03-11 00:00

A HOWICK auctioneer has sold an Irma Stern painting for a whopping R2,7 million.

Daryl Kriel of Kensington Bond auctioneers in Howick said both the buyer and the seller have asked to remain unnamed.

All he would divulge is that the seller is from Durban and the buyer is “a local businessman”.

Kriel said he was thrilled that the painting was given to be auctioned locally and not in Johannesburg or Cape Town as is the norm.

He said the original bid on auction day of R2,5 million was rejected by the seller, but the following day the bid was upped to R2,7 million.

“I stand to be corrected, but I think it’s the highest amount paid for a painting in KwaZulu-Natal to date,” said Kriel.

He said other Irma Stern paintings have sold for over R20 million.

Kriel said Irma Stern was born in 1894 in Schweizer-Reneke, Transvaal.

Best known for her paintings, Stern also worked as a sculptor whose portrayal of African people gave her white counterparts insight into the African way of life.

She died in 1966.

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