Jacob Hendrik Pierneef

13 August 1886 – 4 October 1957

The La Motte heritage collection on JH Pierneef was acquired from his daughter Marita Pierneef-Bailey in 2009. The collection features 45 artworks dating between 1908 and 1955 as well as Pierneef memorabilia inclusive of documents, books, artefacts and his painting equipment.

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An Old South African Master
An Old South African Master

JH Pierneef was born on 13 August 1886 in Pretoria. During 1900-1903, Pierneef and his family moved to Holland, where works of old European masters made a lasting impression on him.

On the family’s return to Pretoria in 1903, Pierneef was employed at a grocer, tobacco shop and later the State Library. By the mid-1910’s Pierneef started travelling extensively, boasting his first solo exhibitions and art related talks country wide. By the mid-1920’s he undertook another influential trip to Europe, and on his return visited various countries along the east coast of Africa.

His intimate knowledge of the Southern African landscape and architecture found expression in his work. Because line was so important in his art, he naturally excelled as a sketcher and graphic artist. An extensive collection of sketches and graphic works, including a large number of linocuts – many of which portray the Southern African landscape and architecture – attest to his mastery.

This great South African master passed away on 4 October 1957 in his hometown Pretoria.

Pierneef’s greatness has been acknowledge by, inter alia, three honorary doctorates, his works are represented world-wide in private and corporate collections, whilst it is continuously increasing in value on art auctions.

La Motte Wine Estate hosts Pierneef’s permanent heritage collection in the museum while a series of 128 linocut prints are displayed in various visiting areas on the estate.

During 2017, the La Motte Museum presented A Tribute to the Life and Work of South African artist, Jacob Hendrik Pierneef (1886 – 1957).

An essay for the accompanying exhibition publication by Amanda Botha can be viewed here.

Purchase a copy of the E-book here: A Tribute to the Life and Work of Jacob Hendrik Pierneef