Ode to kitsch

Emerging and established artists honour the "King of Kitsch", Vladimir Tretchikoff, with unique interpretations of his style and techniques.

“Tretchikoff and Me” is a salon-style exhibition at Salon91 in Cape Town, featuring original archival prints produced under the supervision of the “King of Kitsch” Vladimir Tretchikoff. The exhibition is open until 31 July 2010.

Tretchikoff and Me approaches his work, life, style and techniques from a new angle. The works at Salon91 are mostly two-dimensional prints. The exhibition is curated by Andrew Lamprecht and presented in association with the Tretchikoff Foundation.

Some of the exhibited works were produced before Tretchikoff’s death in 2006 and others thereafter, by new and established South African artists who have responded to his legacy, creativity and influence.

Tretchikoff made his work accessible to the general public by selling affordable prints of his work in department stores in the 1960s and 1970s. It was not uncommon to see a Tretchikoff print above the mantelpiece of working and middle-class homes.

Despite the “kitsch” label given to him by his detractors, younger generations of artists and designers have embraced “Tretchi” as a type of counter-culture artistic icon who bucked the system and “laughed all the way to the bank” (his own phrase).

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