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Bonhams to auction work of David Bowie's favourite artists to benefit South African charity
Norman Catherine's chair for CHIVA Africa. Photo: Frederick Wilkinson and CHIVA.

LONDON.- Bonhams’ charity auction in London on 15th March in aid of CHIVA Africa will feature the work of artists Beezy Bailey and Norman Catherine – both of whom counted David Bowie among their greatest fans.

The pair, along with more than 30 other artists, celebrities and designers, have each contributed a stunning hand-painted and upholstered one-off chair for the charity event, entitled Sitting Pretty.

The two South African artists were Bowie’s personal friends and Bowie admired, collected and curated their work.

Beezy Bailey, a prominent South African artist, met Bowie in 1995, when Bailey invited the star to lunch at his house in the hills around Cape Town. It was there that they spontaneously began painting together. They ended up collaborating on over fifty works on canvas, which went on to be shown in London, Basel and Cape Town.

Norman Catherine is one of South Africa’s most highly-acclaimed contemporary artists. He is known for his brightly-coloured, comical and crude sculptures and paintings. Bowie adored his work. He described Catherine as the ‘real deal’, and filled his house with sculptures by the artist. ‘They still startle and light up every time I look in their direction,’ the star said in 2000. Bowie also curated an exhibition of South African art at The Gallery in Cork Street in 1995, which featured Catherine among the artists shown.

For the CHIVA Africa event, both artists have transferred their own original paintings onto the upholstery of each unique chair. The pieces have each been signed by the artist.

Bids for the chairs can be made online at and will conclude in a live auction at Bonhams New Bond Street on 15th March, 2016

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