Here’s how much South Africa’s top artists can charge for a painting

AfrAsia Bank South Africa Wealth Report 2018 | BusinessTech, April 17, 2018

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A new report finds that the global top-end art market is valued at around $75 billion. African art accounts for around $1 billion of this, with US$450 million (R5.5 billion) held in South Africa specifically.

As part of the AfrAsia Bank South Africa Wealth Report 2018, global market research group New World Wealth, looked at the rise of fine art and classic cars in South Africa over the past decade.

According to the group’s in-house indices, South African fine art prices have risen by 28% over the past 10 years (in $ terms). Global fine art prices have risen by 12% over the same period, it said.

The majority of major art galleries are located in Johannesburg, Cape Town, Pretoria and Stellenbosch, while major dealers include Strauss & Co and Stephan Welz.

Leading South African artists (in terms of price) include:


Irma Stern is currently the most valuable South African artist, averaging around R5 million per painting. In 2011 ‘Arab Priest’ sold for £3,044,000 (R52.5 million), while in 2010, ‘Bahora girl’ sold for £2,372,000 (R41 million).


Maggie Laubser – average price of around R600,000  – up to R20 million. “We expect the value of her paintings to rise heavily going forward, possibly matching Irma Stern prices in the near future,” New World Wealth said.


JH Pierneef – average price of around R800,000 – up to R20 million.


Alexis Preller  – average price of around R600,000 – up to R10 million.


Gerard Sekoto – average price of around R400,000  – up to R5 million.


Hugo Naude – average price of around R300,000 – up to R2 million.


William Kentridge – average price of around R800,000 – up to R5 million.


John Meyer – average price of around R300,000 – up to R3 million.


New World Wealth also identified several artists expected to shine in the future: i.e. expected to fetch similar prices to artists above in the near future.