Charles Sekano (South African, born 1943)
Lady washing Calabash, 1998
Signed ‘signature’ (lower right)
Oil pastel on paper
74.5 x 48.8 cm
US$ 2,500 – 4,000
Provenance: private collection
Sold US$ 2,348

Born in Sophiatown, Johannesburg, Charles Sekano fled the Apartheid regime as a young man and emigrated to Nairobi, where he lived and worked as a visual artist and Jazz pianist for 30 years. During this time, Sekano became one of a select group of artists represented by Gallery Watatu. He developed a distinctive practice, merging memory, fantasy and reality into abundant scenes filled with desire, longing, freedom and loss. Whilst influences of Picasso’s and Braque’s Cubism, and Toulouse-Lautrec’s and Rousseau’s poster art are to be found, Sekano has always rooted his work in cosmopolitan urban Africa. The nightclubs and bars of Nairobi with their beautiful clientele from diverse cultures were his subject matter and remained his inspiration even after his return, in 1997, to the newly liberated South Africa.

Sekano’s work is widely collected: he has exhibited in Kenya, the Netherlands, Germany, Japan, the UK and the USA. His works are in private collections across the world and in various museums including the Volkenkunde Museum, Frankfurt and the Peabody Essex Museum, Massachusetts, USA. They regularly appear at international art auctions.