Published March 21, 2013
JOHANNESBURG – Bonhams auction house says Vladimir Tretchikoff's iconic "Chinese Girl" painting is coming home to South Africa after some 60 years in a private Chicago home.
The picture of the beauty with a green-hued skin and ruby-red lips, said to be one of the most reproduced in the world, sold for 982,050 British pounds — double the expected price — at a Bonhams London auction Wednesday. Bonhams says it is the highest price paid for a Tretchikoff or any work by a South African artist.
Diamond jewelry magnate Laurence Graff bought the painting and will display it at the Delaire Graff wine and luxury lodges estate in the Cape winelands.
Tretchikoff was inspired by a Cape Town launderette worker and sold the painting while touring the United States in the 1950s.