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Norman Catherine artworks to be auctioned in Paris
Posted on April 11, 2017.

Norman Catherine, Identity South Africa, 1988, Oil on paper

Works by one of David Bowie's favourite artists - South African Norman Catherine - will go on auction at Piasa in Paris on 20 April 2017.

Norman Catherine (born 1949, South Africa) has been much collected by David Bowie who wrote the foreword of Catherine's catalogue at Goodman’s Gallery Editions. Now four of Catherine's works go on sale at the leading French auction house, Piasa, on 20 April in Paris as part of their third Trajectories and Origins sale of Contemporary African Art.

Bowie first visited South Africa in 1995 for the first Johannesburg Biennale. Visitors came from around the world to witness the largest exhibition ever held in Africa, and it was at this time that Bowie made the trip south to research a piece for Modern Painters. Bowie was introduced to the work of many of the African artists, meeting several of the artists in person, and acquiring works for his collection.

Bowie described his experience of Contemporary African art at the 1995 Johannesburg Biennale as: "Mind-jarringly moving as any major art-thing I've seen, East, West or Middle, in any year." It is this emotion that led him to collect Norman Catherine's works amongst other African artists.

Since this ringing celebrity endorsement by the great music artist David Bowie, for an artist on canvas, we see a growing interest in Norman Catherine's works amongst collectors who are increasingly buying Contemporary African art. The mixture of primitivism and futurism of Catherine's sculpture and painting, of which he has been a pioneer, is the kind of art that collectors are looking for: an art that synthesis African identity and contemporaneity.

Norman Catherine's work hangs in some of the most prestigious art museums in South Africa and abroad and is featured in many leading corporate and private collections. These include: The Museum of Modern Art, New York, USA (MOMA); Reserve Bank of South Africa; Minneapolis Institute of Arts (Minneapolis, Minnesota); and the Brooklyn Museum, New York, USA.  

Corporate collections include: Chase Manhattan Bank, New York, USA; Mobil Court Art Collection, Cape Town;, Volkskas Bank, Pretoria;, Berardo Foundation, Portugal;,and Fortis Circus theatre, Scheveningen, Holland.

Christophe Person of Piasa auctions says: "In this auction are works that show both the creativity orf artists in Africa but also reflects the struggling of parts of Africa which is the driving force behind the thousands of immigrants, including talented artists seeking a better life in Europe. There is a strange irony that while this human wave of new immigrants arrives to increasing disquiet in Europe, the young art of Africa is finding wall space among collectors."

For more information, visit the Piasa website.

The Piasa sale includes these works by Norman Catherine:

Norman Catherine, Untitled 'Beheaded yellow figure', 2001, Acrylic on wood

Norman Catherine Untitled 'Green figure with snake', 2001, Acrylic on wood

Norman Catherine, Blood brothers, 2001, 175 x 120cm

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