Fishmonger by the Beach, by: Hendra Gunawan (1918 – 1983)

Jun 06, 2022. 01:17 UTC
Fishmonger by the Beach, by: Hendra Gunawan (1918 – 1983)


Acquired from

For sale

Note: I can not upload the Certificate of Authenticity, provenance and photos documents since this website does not support PDF file. =============== Artist : Hendra Gunawan (1918 – 1983) ========== Medium : Oil on canvas ========== Signature : Hendra & KW 1974 at the lower left ========== Height : +/- 134 cm ========== Width : +/- 88.5 cm ========== Period/Date : 1974, acquired in 1974 ========== Country : Indonesia Condition : Good ========== Re-Examined Date : 14th May 2017========== Authenticity # : P-1020/12/02/2001 ========== 1. RESEARCH & ESSAY=============== As a guerilla fighter for independence, painter, and an artistic sculptor, the name of Hendra Gunawan has echoed through Nusantara and the International world for his wondrous artworks. Hendra Gunawan was born in Bandung – West Java – Indonesia in 11th of June, 1918 from the couple Raden Prawinegara and Raden Odah Tejaningsih. During his youth, he studied and explored many facets of Indonesian painters at the time such as the expressionist Affandi (1907 - 1990) and the landscape—panoramic painter Wahidi Sunanta. Two of these painters became the masters whom Hendra always looked up to in the world of art. In 1935, together with his close friends, Sudarso (1914 — 2006) and Barli Sasmitawinata (1921 — ), Hendra joined his masters to form a community of painters dubbed “Kelompok Lima” (“Group Five”) in Bandung. The name “Kelompok Lima” was famously recognized for its members who were known to travel around Indonesia to paint together. The five painters are Affandi, Barli, Hendra Gunawan, Sudarso, and Wahdi. =============== In 1938 Hendra Gunawan was self-taught himself in sculpting. During Japanese occupation, he actively guided and taught the youths of Indonesia that were passionate in learning the arts of painting and sculpting, while also organizing art and cultural events at Pusat Tenaga Rakyat (PUTERA) under the leadership of three Indonesian national figures known as Tiga Serangkai: Soekarno, Moh. Hatta, and K.H. Mas Mansyur. Through these activities Hendra and his colleagues spent their time creating a lot of paintings in restricted places such as Pasar Ikan, Tanjung Priok, and Pelabuhan Cirebon. =============== Hendra Gunawan also participated in other artistic interests such as Sundanese dramatic arts in theatre, he advised the establishing of Poesaka Sunda group (Sunda Heritage) in Bandung in 1940, as a decor painter. His meeting with Affandi was a phase and a catalyst for him becoming a painter. Based on sheer willpower, honesty, and genuine ambition he found his courage to forge his own path. With a pencil, papers, canvas, and paint he started his career as a painter. His circle of community and friends became his pillars of support to guide him in growth. Furthermore, together with other painters in Bandung, they managed to exhibit his works in many exhibitions in around 1940s. =============== Entitled "Fishmonger by the beach", the present work was painted in 1974, four years before he was released from the jail at Kebun Waru (KW), Bandung – West Java. Not like the exotic beauties popularized by the Mooi Indies (Beautiful Indies) aesthetic of Indo-European artists, the women in the present work is composed in a soft motherly face wearing a kebaya with batik motifs which the blouse opened a little upon the chest part. The woman, fishmonger, is depicted selling fish catches, sitting on a large rock by the beach with her son. A son on his mother’s lap is shown proffering the fish to buyers, that all are depicted around the beach with some fishmongers at long distance. Hendra Gunawan emphasizes the son figure in slightly normal composition, while the female figure is composed in a more protruding chin and lips. The artist also constructs the body of the female figure with a larger, curved hips, large breast almost protruding, and long slender hands and large leg calves. Its body is composed not like humane compared to that of natural and normal human body anatomy but the artist characterizes it without leaving its feminine nature. Hendra visualizes its body shape based upon the Wayang art performance from the West Java region, where he lives there. These figures are painted metaphorically inspired by shadow puppet who are famously known for the characters of Ramayana and Mahabharata. =============== Through the present painting, Hendra Gunawan clearly wishes to tell the viewers with the utmost clarity the scenes displayed through his paintings. The narrative element is very important for him; therefore, the present work is loaded with ways of visual communication bridged by the themes he raises ‘Fishmonger by the Beach’. The life of fishermen like this is parallel to the meaning of the fishes they catch and sell. Life must be fought for if you want to get what you want. It is not permissible to give up and retreat in situations that are considered difficult. Like the life of fish swimming in the vast ocean, it is not afraid to live in a saltwater environment that taste very salty which does not have a negative impact upon the fish. Compare with Hendra’s work, entitled ‘Wanita Sabar Menanti’ (Woman waiting patiently) in size of 134 x 90 cm., signed but without date, sold at Christie’s Hong Kong, 28th May 2006, Lot. 38, for HKD 1,080,000, initially estimated between HKD550,000 – HKD700,000. The piece was then sold at Sotheby’s Hong Kong, 8th October 2013, Lot. 446, for HKD 1,840,000, initially estimated between HKD 1,400,000 – HKD 2,000,000 (See fig. 1).


Height : +/- 134 cm ========= Width : +/- 88.5 cm


PROVENANCE OF ARTWORK: Lo Wing Tjong (1851 – 1934) to Liem Guan Kwee (22th September 1901 – 25th March 1985) to Liem Syuhada (12th June 1927 – 22nd April 2000) to Current Owners (Descendants) =============== The present painting was acquired directly from the artist on June 1974 in Bandung by Liem Guan Kwee (22th September 1901 – 25th March 1987), a son of Lo Wing Tjong (1851 – 1934), a Diplomat and Chinese community leader in Batavia under Guangxu reign (1875 – 1908). The acquisition of the present happened when the artist was imprisoned in Kebun Waru (KW), Bandung, West Java. As Liem Guan Kwee was an art and antique dealer, he travelled around the nation and visited the renowned artists, like Hendra Gunawan, to acquire the valuable artworks for his business and collection at that time. =============== In 2001, the present artwork was researched and authenticated by team of National Archaeology, Art and Culture Foundation in person deriving from Southeast Asia artworks, paintings and Chinese ceramics experts. The foundation itself was led by Professor Abu Ridho, an Asian art scholar and consultant, former curator of National Museum of Jakarta – Indonesia, and author of Chinese art books. The physical examination of this artwork and its authenticity is certified on an official letter of statement and agreement that was signed by professor and legalized by public notary ‘Royani, SH’, dated 8th April 2002. In 2004, the government of Republic of Indonesia recorded this legacy especially regarding with its authenticity, historical artwork and the ownership of property or legal rights. This artwork was appreciated and archived officially as a national cultural heritage object by Culture and Museum Agency of Government of Indonesia, Jakarta, number 863/-1-853.3, dated 14th April 2004. =============== In 2017, this artwork was re-researched by team of National Archaeology, Art and Culture Foundation. The team of experts in the respective field re-examined and re-analyzed this artwork by more elaborate manner. The re-research and re-analyzing include its technical or stylistic analysis, documentary research and comparison with similar artist or periods. All of them are relied on archives, art libraries and reputable art and antique commercial institutions or auction houses enabling to strongly establish its eligible quality and authenticity. =============== All documents and photos of its provenance and certificate of authenticity are included in separated page.

Answered within about 6 hours
Jun 06, 07:38 UTC
By George

Fair Market Value

$180,000 - $250,000 USD

Suggested Asking Price

$200,000 USD
What does this mean?

Dear Faisal.

Thank you for contacting Mearto with your appraisal inquiry again and we hope you are well.

The presented object appears to be a painting made in oil paint on canvas with the measurements of 134 x 88,5 cm.
The painting depicts a woman sitting with her child on her knees. This artwork has the title "Fishmonger by the Beach" and is signed and dated 1974. This painting appears to be made by Hendra GUNAWAN (1918-1983) and comes from a private collection.
Comparable objects in size and motif by Hendra Gunawan were recently offered and sold on the international auction market. 

This piece is in good condition and there is no severe damage visible in the images provided.

A fair market estimation for an authentified artwork by Hendra GUNAWAN (1918-1983) would be between 180.000 to 250.000 USD.
This estimate is based on actual recent past recorded auction sales of comparable items. Retail "asking prices" can be higher and may vary.

An artwork of such high potential value requires further authentication research. This estimate is provided on the condition of authenticity.

With kind regards,


This item is for sale

  • Exclusive access for professionals
  • Unlimited number of private messages
  • Buy directly from the seller
  • No subscription or transaction fees
  • Guaranteed return policy

Are you a dealer or private individual interested in purchasing this item? Apply for access to the Mearto Marketplace to communicate directly with the seller for this and thousands of similar items.

Other items from seller
Related items from other collectors