Mother City Magic ~Cape Town

Mother City Magic ~Cape Town
Written and edited by Veronica Clark

Monday, 11 July 2011

Tretchikoff ~ The People's Painter

Tretchikoff Exhibition is on at the Iziko South African National Gallery until end September. Located in the Company Gardens. Tel 021 482 3874 or visit

Many of us know the famed artists as Tretchi. Some of us, of a certain age,  stumbled on his art during our lunch hours rushing out of the office in front of John Orrs where he would sell prints of his art! There was a time, when no house would be complete without a Tretchi print of our own "Mona Lisa"  Do you know that , apparently, more prints have been sold of Monica Pon Su San ~ The Chinese Girl than the Mona Lisa! Who would have thought? Monica Pon Su San who posed for Tretchikoff  was also at the opening of this amazing exhibition along with Marianne Fassler who owns many Tretchi prints and put the idea together for the exhibition.

Tretchikoff coined the saying 'laughing all the way to the bank"  as a result of him actively encouraging ordinary people to buy his prints instead of the originals. He wanted the working classes to be able to afford a Tretchikoff and so his income was akin to Picasso! The gallery gift shop has prints for sale as well as books, cushions and other goodies.

It was amazing to see his originals. I paid a mere R20-00 entrance fee and enjoyed a wonderful morning learning more about Tretchi and saw works that I have never seen before, such as the series "The Ten Commandments". This is the first complete showcase of his work and with paintings coming as far as Europe, Canada and America, well worth the visit. He died in 2006 and its sad that this is the first.

This is my personal favourite...

The Dying Swan...

She is exquisite ... stunning to see the original!

A self portrait....

When last have you been to The company Gardens? The day I visited was a warm winter's day and it was wonderful. Parking was a bit of an issue, but I persuaded the guard at the South African Museum and Planetarium entrance to squeeze me in ! Turns out the Tretchi Exhibition is very well supported!

Also on at the moment was a collection of black and white photos titled " The Indian in Drum magazine in the 1950's. Loads of images from history with many famous faces.

as well as...

Ranjith Kelly's Through the lens of Durban's veteran photographer. Some amazing images to see here.

All this and more, that I did not get to as it was lunch time and I was off to The Clay Oven in Long street for Pizza and Cherry Milkshakes with my son Byron and his pal Darren.

Clay Oven is at no 166 Long Street, Cape Town. Tel 021 424 7233 and according to Cape Town Magazine in the top 10 Pizza Places in Cape Town for being well priced and legitimately being baked in a clay oven. I agree that the pizza was great and the milkshake tops!

The boys  promised me that the cherry milkshakes are amazing! They were as was the Moroccan Pizza and some concoction that Byron had on his pizza. We shared two large and it was more than enough, even for the local bergie who stopped by our table. we found him further down Long Street already in Friday Swing Mood dancing to the music from one of the shops! Always great entertainment on Long Street!!

So, I thoroughly recommend a trip to the gardens, the Tretchi exhibition and The Clay Oven on Long Street.

Happy Living


Thank you for stopping by. Please leave me your comments.

images from google


  1. WHAT A WONDERFUL BEGINNING!! I am enthralled and bewitched. Please share more. South Africa is on our short list for a visit in the next 2 years -- and I hope to see and learn more of the beauty of this land. Rebecca

  2. Maravilhosa descoberta! Seu trabalho é de uma beleza ímpar! Parabéns!

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