This is a retrospective exhibition of 200 artworks dating from 1947 to
the present and coincides with the celebration of the artists 70th
birthday. This occasion also serves as a general introduction with
regard to the publication (Human and Rousseau) of a monograph on his
life and work. The curator of the exhibition and author of the book is
Muller Ballot, director of the University Museum.
The exhibition comprises the eight sequential phases of his oeuvre and
presents an extensive variety of subjects, ideas, media and materials.
Although most of the works exhibited here form part of the US
collection, a number of additional works - early works, in particular -
owned by private and corporate collectors are also incorporated to
illustrate Coetzees developing oeuvre as comprehensively and clearly as
The collection of approximately 180 works by Christo Coetzee that has
been acquired by the University since 1978 is the largest collection of
works by an acknowledged contemporary South African artist owned by a
public institution. The University Museum is proud of this distinction.
The Rector and Vice-chancellor, Prof Andreas van Wyk, writes as follows
in the Preface of the catalogue which accompanies the exhibition: We at
the University of Stellenbosch see it as a privilege to honor one of our
countrys most prestigious artists at this occasion. It is our wish that
this retrospective exhibition as well as the newly published book on his
life and work will make a contribution to giving particular
acknowledgment to Coetzee as a pioneer of the art that was produced in
South Africa and overseas over the past fifty-odd years.