Chinese Girl under the hammer

first_imgThe Chinese Girl, with her blue skin and red lips, is one of the most widely reproduced artworks of the 20th century.(Image: Bonhams) The artist in his heyday, surrounded by some of his paintings.(Image: Tretchikoff)MEDIA CONTACTS • Julian RoupBonhams, London+44 20 7468 8259Janine ErasmusThe celebrated Tretchikoff painting Chinese Girl is to go on auction in London on 20 March, but before that the pop culture classic will be exhibited in Johannesburg and New York.The artwork, of an oriental woman with a strange hue to her skin, is said to be the self-taught Tretchikoff’s most recognisable painting, and one that has been reproduced, according to some sources, more often than the Mona Lisa. It’s also known as the Green Lady or the Blue Lady – depending on the quality of the print.Bidding will start at US$471 000 (R4.3-million), says auction house Bonhams, and the painting is expected to bring in as much as $785 000 (R7.1-million). The sale is part of a yearly auction of South African art and will include a special focus on works by William Kentridge.At the 2012 South African sale, held in March, sculptures by Anton van Wouw and Edoardo Villa as well as paintings by Irma Stern, Cecil Skotnes, Walter Battiss and Pierneef, among others, sold for thousands and in some cases, millions of rands. Tretchikoff’s Fighting Zebras changed hands for $92 400 (R838 000).Bonhams also reports that in October 2012, at part two of the South African sale, Tretchikoff’s Portrait of Lenka fetched a new artist’s world record price of $530 000 (R4.8-million). Lenka was Tretchikoff’s muse during World War Two, and he painted her several times.Tretchikoff sold the original Chinese Girl to an American woman during a tour of the US, and it has remained in the family ever since. According to Bonhams, the buyer’s granddaughter is now putting the painting up for auction.The painting will be on view at Johannesburg’s Everard Read Gallery on 23, 25 and 26 February before it’s shipped to London.Mysterious ladyIn a 2011 interview in the South African version of Marie Claire magazine, the identity of the mysterious woman, a puzzle that had art lovers scratching their heads for decades, was revealed. She is Monika Pon, now resident on Gauteng’s East Rand, but in those days she was Monika Sing-Lee and she lived in Cape Town.In 1950, she was just 17 when she encountered the artist in her uncle’s laundromat in the suburb of Sea Point. Tretchikoff asked her to pose for him and some 15 of his pupils at his studio in the inner-city suburb of Gardens.But the young woman didn’t appreciate the significance of the opportunity because, as she said, “he wasn’t famous”. That would only happen during the 1960s and 1970s, when prints of the Chinese Girl began to appear in living rooms, restaurants and on memorabilia all over the world.There are actually two versions of the Chinese Girl – in the well-known one Sing-Lee wears a vibrant gold-coloured tunic and in the lesser-known version she wears a subdued blue top. She was paid the equivalent of $2.2 (R20) for effort.Russian author Boris Gorelik has also made the pilgrimage to visit the subject of what has been described as the world’s most reproduced artwork. Gorelik’s book Incredible Tretchikoff is scheduled for publication in 2013, and he travelled from Moscow to Johannesburg to interview Sing-Lee for the book.The Russian admits in a local newspaper article, published in mid-2011, that he was sceptical at first, but when Sing-Lee opened an album to show him photos of herself that were taken around that time, his doubts vanished.“The girl in the black-and-white snapshots from the fifties was just like the legendary image come to life,” he wrote. “Only, she smiled most of the time and didn’t have that turquoise tint to her face. The visual similarity couldn’t be clearer.”Gorelik maintains that Chinese Girl prints in top condition can bring in hundreds. However, the outrageous Tretchikoff was once widely reviled for the perceived tackiness of his paintings, which lacked subtlety and taste according to the critics, although he always insisted that he was a serious artist.But over the last two decades the art world has had a change of heart and today the pieces are highly sought-after.From Russia to South AfricaVladimir Griegorievich Tretchikoff was born in 1913 in Petropavlovsk, an industrial city in today’s Kazakhstan, into a wealthy family of landowners. He was the youngest of six boys and two girls. In 1917 Russian workers rose up against the Tsarist regime and the family fled to avoid the revolution. They settled in Harbin in Manchuria, northern China.The young Tretchikoff showed a natural artistic talent early on, and soon he was painting backdrops at the Russian opera house in that city. He later moved to Shanghai and worked there until 1934 as a cartoonist at the Shanghai Evening Post.Tretchikoff married a fellow Russian ex-pat and the couple moved to Singapore, where his career continued to develop – until the city was invaded by Japanese forces in 1941. His wife and daughter were evacuated to an unknown destination, and he was captured by the Japanese and spent the rest of the war first in a prison camp in Serang, Java, and later, on parole in Jakarta after he had proved his claim that he was an artist.After the war he was reunited with his wife and child, with the help of the Red Cross – the two had settled in South Africa and the country was to be his home from then on. He held his first solo exhibition in 1943 in the Maskew Miller art gallery, and became the darling of the local art community who liked his disdain of his critics. It wasn’t long before the US, Canada and the UK were also caught up in Tretchi-mania.But still the art critics remained unconvinced, until the late 1990s when Tretchikoff’s paintings started to fetch impressive sums at auction. Sotheby’s in South Africa raised $10 000 for the Zulu Maiden in 1999 while Fruits of Bali fetched a whopping $410 000 (R3.7-million) in Cape Town in 2008. The trend is expected to continue with Chinese Girl.Tretchikoff died in a frail care home in 2006, aged 92, after suffering a stroke a few years before. The Tretchikoff Trust was established in 2008 and keeps his legacy alive by encouraging South Africa’s youngsters to pursue their artistic dreams.last_img read more

Several Azkals without clubs after national team stint

first_imgThe Philippine Azkals were readying for a key match against Kyrgyzstan at press time. —CONTRIBUTED PHOTO/DENNIS MALLARIDUBAI—It’s not just Phil and James Younghusband whose club careers were uncertain before they joined the national team in the AFC Asian Cup here.Defensive stalwart Alvaro Silva is also playing for the Azkals without even knowing where he will continue his club career next season.ADVERTISEMENT LATEST STORIES Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next Silva, who has played in Spain, South Korea, Azerbaijan, Vietnam and most recently, Malaysia, said he remained focused on the Azkals and would decide on his future only after the team’s stint was finished here.Phil and James Younghusband are also without clubs after Davao Aguilas decided it won’t field a professional team next season. Another teammate of the Younghusband brothers at Davao, Adam Reed, is also here with the national team and came on as a sub against South Korea.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSWin or don’t eat: the Philippines’ poverty-driven, world-beating pool stars“I want to focus on the team because we still need to win and reach the knockout stage,” said the 34-year-old Silva, who was set to start for coach Sven-Goran Eriksson against Kyryzstan in the Azkals’ final group C match at Rashid Stadium here.A strong physical presence with the ability to read danger before it happens, Silva is one of the primary reasons why the Azkals held South Korea for long periods, before conceding a goal in the second half in a 0-1 defeat. TS Kammuri to enter PAR possibly a day after SEA Games opening MOST READ SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion Chief Justice Peralta vows to lead by example, bares 10-point program PLAY LIST 02:02Chief Justice Peralta vows to lead by example, bares 10-point program04:04‘Quiel’ now a severe tropical storm – Pagasa00:50Trending Articles02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Is Luis Manzano planning to propose to Jessy Mendiola? Pacquiao larger than life for Broner SEA Games hosting troubles anger Duterte LOOK: Joyce Pring goes public with engagement to Juancho Triviño SEA Games: Biñan football stadium stands out in preparedness, completion View commentslast_img read more

10 months agoAC Milan coach Gattuso: My brief is to qualify for the Champions League

first_imgAC Milan coach Gattuso: My brief is to qualify for the Champions Leagueby Carlos Volcano10 months agoSend to a friendShare the loveAC Milan coach Rino Gattuso admits his brief is to qualify for the Champions League.Gattuso admits their midweek draw with Bologna was a setback.He said, “We could’ve strengthened our grip on fourth at Bologna but didn’t. We played like schoolboys and didn’t play.“We weren’t good technically, whereas they all sat back. I worry about the heads of my players as we’ve struggled in our last few games.“Since my first day here, the club have asked me to qualify for the Champions League. It’s difficult, but we’re fourth at the moment.“We must make as little mistakes as possible, but there’s no problem on my part. I’m not thinking about being hunted.“I’m calm and I just think about working. The exit from Europe was a blow and we all expected more at Bologna, but we must analyse the situation with clarity and only think about working to improve.“I have to keep improving the team. Everything else is just hot air for me.” About the authorCarlos VolcanoShare the loveHave your saylast_img read more

10 months agoPhilippe Sandler delighted with Man City debut

first_imgPhilippe Sandler delighted with Man City debutby Paul Vegas10 months agoSend to a friendShare the lovePhilippe Sandler was delighted to make his debut for Manchester City in yesterday’s FA Cup win over Rotherham.The Dutch defender, who was played at centre-half, featured as a second-half substitute for the 7-0 thumping.Sandler said, “I always play there. Honestly, I have never been in the midfield. Why now? I stood there during the training session. Sending passes. Since I’ve been here, I try to develop as a central defender. “Vincent Kompany helps me enormously. I learn a lot from him. “I do not know if I will get another chance again soon. I especially want to be completely fit first.” About the authorPaul VegasShare the loveHave your saylast_img

Tis the season for doorstep stealing Shoppers vent about delivery security

first_imgTodd Bailey is fed up with delivery companies that drop his online purchases at his door.A few years ago, the Grande Prairie, Alta., resident was at the hospital for the birth of his child when a big-screen TV he had ordered was left on his front stoop.Bailey figures the enormous box, a target for would-be thieves, was there nearly 24 hours. The frequent online shopper has been repeatedly frustrated that expensive purchases have been left unattended rather than transported to a safe location like a post office.“It’s not the first time but it still surprises me when you come home and there’s a big package on your doorstep out there for everyone to see,” Bailey says.“I think the assumption is it’s being delivered to a person and not to an address. The assumption is it’s being delivered to go inside the house.”For some shoppers, having a package left at their home — especially if it’s placed in an inconspicuous spot — is preferable to trekking to a faraway depot that’s always busy.But Facebook neighbourhood groups and local news broadcasts are now frequently reporting on thieves caught on home security cameras stealing packages left outside.On Thursday, Bailey tweeted a photo to Purolator of a box left against his door. It was a Christmas gift from his mother for his seven-year-old son.“It’s almost too easy (for a thief),” he says. “It just boggles your mind.”In response to his tweet, a customer service representative for Purolator replied: “Our delivery service requires a signature however if the sender selects the signature-not-required service, and there’s no risk of it being stolen or damaged, we’ll honour it.”There are no easy answers for consumers who are victims of theft.In an email, a Purolator spokeswoman said “the receiver should notify local authorities. They can also file a claim with Purolator.”Meanwhile, Canada Post and UPS Canada both say shoppers should contact the retailer. FedEx Canada did not respond to an interview request but a page on its website invites customers to file a claim if a package is lost.Amazon.ca shoppers are told — if they read the legalese in the site’s conditions of use — that “risk of loss and title for items purchased from Amazon.ca pass to you upon our delivery to the carrier or, if such items must cross an international border, then risk of loss and title pass to you when they clear customs.”Amazon added in a statement that “the vast majority of deliveries make it to customers without issue. In the rare case something occurs, we work with customers directly to make it right.”The Seattle-based company thinks it’s solved the problem with its new Amazon Key product, which allows a customer’s door to be wirelessly unlocked to accomodate a delivery. A camera records the drop-off to protect against anything inappropriate and the door locks as soon as the delivery is complete. The service is not yet available in Canada.Canada Post spokesman Jon Hamilton agrees that package theft is still “a small issue that gets a lot of attention,” but could not provide any figures on how many complaints the organization receives.While he acknowledged it does happen, he notes the volume of parcel deliveries is at an all-time high.“What we have right now with (holiday) online shopping is we’re delivering over one million parcels a day across the country,” says Hamilton, noting the postal service hit that daily marker 60 times this year.He invites shoppers that are afraid of theft to use Canada Post’s FlexDelivery service, which allows online purchases to be directed to a post office for pickup.But some Canada Post locations have been overloaded by packages being stored for online shoppers. On Friday, there were six across the country that were jammed full and unable to accept any new deliveries.“The one part of the process we can’t control if a parcel goes to a post office is when people will pick it up. About 80 per cent of the parcels that are dropped off at a post office get picked up within three days and there’s about 20 per cent that will linger,” Hamilton says.“And at this time of year when more and more parcels are arriving every day with online shopping, that can add up.”He added that one major retailer’s recent sale on the Instant Pot wrecked havoc with Canada Post’s network, given how large the cooking devices are.“(We) were chock-a-block with Instant Pots … so you can imagine how that could eat up a lot of space in a short period of time.”Bruce Cran, president of the Consumers’ Association of Canada, says e-commerce is still in its relative infancy so it’s not surprising that there are inefficiencies in the delivery process.He also believes that on a percentage basis, the number of packages being stolen is small.“Consumers love the convenience and at the moment, I don’t think there’s an immense danger in people looking to take deliveries,” Cran said.“I don’t get the impression at the moment that it’s anywhere near the quantity that would prevent us from utilizing these services. We value being able to order on Thursday night and maybe get it on Friday morning.”last_img read more

Mortgage risks fading thanks to higher rates tougher rules Bank of Canada

first_imgOTTAWA — The Bank of Canada is releasing data today that provides a closer look at just how much stricter mortgage rules and higher interest rates have helped slow the growth of new highly indebted households.The central bank is on a clear rate-hiking path and the pace of future increases hinges significantly on the ability of households — particularly those with high levels of debt — to adapt to higher borrowing costs.The bank’s analysis says tougher mortgage qualification tests have reduced the share of new high-leverage, insured loans — those of more than 4.5 times a borrower’s annual income — to six per cent in the second quarter of 2018 from 20 per cent in late 2016.The report also says another rule change this year aimed at uninsured mortgages dropped the share of these new loans to 14 per cent in the second quarter of 2018, compared with 20 per cent a year earlier. Senior deputy governor Carolyn Wilkins says the new mortgage rules are improving the quality and reducing the quantity of new mortgages.Wilkins says household debt remains very high and has created a vulnerability in the financial system — but she argues the better quality of loans will put the economy on a more-solid footing to withstand future adverse economic developments.The Canadian Presslast_img read more

Senate committee to hear from new Alberta premier on oil tanker ban

first_imgThe legislation passed in the House of Commons last spring and is being debated in the Senate.An agenda posted online shows the committee is to hear from incoming premier Jason Kenney of the United Conservative Party, Chief of Ermineskin Cree Nation Craig Makinaw, Mayor Don Scott of the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, as well as numerous academics from Alberta universities.The committee heard earlier this month from outgoing NDP premier Rachel Notley, who urged the Senate to toss the bill “in the garbage.”She said the proposed law is discriminatory because it wouldn’t be able to stop international tanker traffic, but would impede Alberta’s efforts to get oil to new markets.Notley added that it’s a double standard given that Ottawa supports the liquefied natural gas industry, tankers on the St. Lawrence Seaway and Newfoundland’s Hibernia oil project.“Let’s show Canadians that 90,000 jobs in downtown Calgary are just as important as 90,000 jobs in downtown Montreal,” Notley said on Apr. 9 via video link from Calgary to senators in Ottawa. EDMONTON, A.B. – A Senate committee is set to hear today from Albertans, including their new premier, on the federal government’s bill to ban tankers off the British Columbia coast.The committee on transport and communications is holding public hearings in Edmonton on Bill C-48.The bill would prohibit oil tankers carrying more than 12,500 tonnes of crude oil in the waters between the northern tip of Vancouver Island and the Alaska border. “Don’t block us, back us,” she added.Kenney has also criticized the tanker bill. He agreed with Notley that it unfairly targets “ethically produced” Alberta oil instead of “dictator oil” imported from overseas.last_img read more

Reflecting upon the transient nature of female mind

first_imgA bureaucrat by profession and novelist by choice, Dr Rashmi Kamal, launched her debut work on fiction ‘The Philanderer’ at Oxford Book Store, Park Street, Kolkata on March 3, 2019. The launch was held in the gracious presence of Jogen Chowdhary, eminent painter; and Subodh Sarkar, an accomplished writer as well as the Chairman, Poetry Academy, Government of West Bengal.The story of ‘The Philandered’ gives two aspects of how people live in India and how they ought to live a dilemma that has no respite. A story of a restless mind. Expressed in a clear yet silent voice, the protagonist of the story is a small town girl who meets the elite section of the city on her journey, around whom the story is woven. The story begins with a prohibitive note, a taboo about the social norms in which the females ought to live in a society. The wings that Reva aspires to use as a symbol of freedom is trimmed by herself in bits and pieces due to her emotional turbulence. Losing for her (any battle) is like a setback created by her own hands. In this process, she runs after a mirage and she is never complacent. Neil, who happens to be her first love, has an everlasting impression on her. His image is perceivable in every man she meets in her life. She looks for him among every bit and pieces of everything that she comes across. Having no solace anywhere, she agrees for a marriage in which she has no interest. But the pain never withers. She looks for the connect everywhere. She knows her actions would be eventually scrutinised by society but she can’t restrain herself. She goes with the flow and leaves falling with the zephyr. She befriends Shiv only to discover that he wasn’t true to her. Dejected and shamed by him, she finds comfort in the arms of Raj who loves her truly. Fate has something in store for her when he leaves her too. Her love for Raj grows in abundance once he is no more, something that she never realized when he was available for him. Never did she imagine that Neil was looking for her, from behind, everywhere and every time. The novel reflects upon the transient nature of a female mind. The writer has put down all flavours to romanticise every situation that arises. Being her debut novel, the author quotes, “I have tried to pour in as many human feelings as possible, for the readers to instill a bout of empathy with the characters with whom I ate, drank and slept for last few years.” It is not renunciation. It is not reconciliation either. It is not even a decision. She doesn’t surrender her independence or her native wit. But there is a change, an acceptance that the readers cannot miss. Rashmi Kamal, by profession a doctor turned bureaucrat, she has qualified civil services for her greater dreams for the nation. She is originally from a small town Bhagalpur. The experiences from Patna Medical College have left long-lasting footprints on her journey and Kolkata is the melting point of her cognition. In her debut novel ‘The Philanderer’ she explores the uncharted mind of a woman who undergoes upheaval in life and refuses how it is supposed to be, thus, she quotes ” Bold insertions were not necessary but very much required, simply to establish a connection with thousands of readers who live and love life like my characters.”last_img read more

Sheila Dikshit six Congress candidates file nominations

first_imgNew Delhi: Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee president Sheila Dikshit, accompanied by Congress workers, filed her nomination papers at the DC office, Nand Nagri for the North East Delhi Lok Sabha seat on Tuesday. All seven candidates of the Congress –former Delhi minister Arvinder Singh Lovely, former Delhi Congress chief Jai Prakash Agarwal, former Union minister Ajay Maken, Delhi Congress working president Rajesh Lilothia, former Cong MP Mahabal Mishra along with Dikshit and Vijender Singh filed their papers. Also Read – After eight years, businessman arrested for kidnap & murderTalking to reporters, Dikshit, who has been fielded from North-East Delhi, said, “I have sentiments attached to this seat as I had fought my first election in Delhi from this seat.” When asked whom she considers a bigger challenge between Delhi BJP chief Manoj Tiwari and AAP candidate Dilip Pandey, the Congress veteran said she sees both of them as a challenge and her endeavour will be to win from this seat. “No seat is small or big and it does not belong to any individual. It belongs to the people of the constituency,” she said. Also Read – Two brothers held for snatchingsDikshit had contested from East Delhi constituency in 1998, but faced defeat. The seat included parts of North-East Delhi at that time. Maken in a scathing attack said that the Modi government has withdrawn through its 7th Pay Commission, all the benefits given to government employees through the 6th Pay Commission by the UPA government. Addressing his workers, Ajay Maken informed them that Congress government had got 3,000 flats constructed for the people staying in Katputli colony at the cost of Rs 1 each. He further said that it was Congress policy that if two families were staying in one jhuggi, then each family got a separate flat. Vijender Singh, who is contesting from South Delhi, said he will focus on issues related youth and sports. “I am genuinely concerned about employment, which I think is a prominent issue for the youth. And being a sportsperson, I am also keen on working towards developing sports infrastructure. It’s about time we had good infrastructure so that budding athletes can actually flourish,” he said. Asked why he opted for the Congress, which did not win a single seat in Delhi in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, Vijender Singh said: “I relate to the ideology and the leadership. As is propagated by our leadership, I want to be a friend of the electorate. I don’t wish to be the ‘neta’ that visits once in five years. I am not going to do rallies or road shows. I am going to connect with the voters spontaneously,” Singh said.last_img read more