CLOWNS, 1969

Important Australian + International Fine Art
2 May 2012


(1913 - 2006, Russian/South African)
CLOWNS, 1969

oil on canvas

64.0 x 102.0 cm

signed upper right: TRETCHIKOFF

$30,000 - 40,000
Sold for $31,200 (inc. BP) in Auction 25 - 2 May 2012, Sydney

Private collection, Tasmania, acquired directly from the artist during an exhibition of his work at Kendal Milnes, Manchester, United Kingdom, 1972


Timmins, H., Tretchikoff, George G. Harrap and Company Limited, London, 1969, unpaginated (illus.)

Catalogue text

Just as the art of Russian born Vladimir Tretchikoff paid little attention to current trends in international art, the artist pursued his own path to extraordinary popularity during his lifetime.

Settling in Cape Town after the War, within two decades Tretchikoff was proclaimed'the richest painter in the world except Picasso'.1 He went on to exhibit widely in North America with more than a million Americans visiting his exhibitions there. His phenomenal international success extended to London with a packed ground floor exhibition at Harrods department store in 1961 breaking all attendance records and attracting over 200,000 visitors. Clowns 1969 was purchased from the artist's Manchester exhibition held at Kendal Milne department store. Clearly the artist's choice of popular upmarket retail venues for exhibiting his work gained maximum exposure to a wide audience. His famous Chinese Girl 1950 featuring an Eastern model with blue-green skin, is one of the best selling commercial prints of all time.

1. Timmins, H., Tretchikoff, George Harrap and Company, London, 1969, unpaginated