A room of my own
work on paper
by
Michael Sarjeant
29 April 2022
Michael Sarjeant (19 May 1933 - 11 Oct 2014), shown for the first time, posthumously, in 2019 at Art Lovers 1932. The work wistful and moving, and full of longing. The recurring female form, attempting to fill the rent in his world, the their arms unable to hold on. The persistent presence of a diminutive male figure in a suit, often bearing a gift of flowers, sometimes with a long and stretched-out arm, trying to reach the unreachable. The human figures often portrayed as giants lost in a doll's house world too small for them, and yet too large.
Sarjeant experimented with a variety of approaches, the brush strokes often richly applied, but occasionally delicate and clean, many works strongly reminiscent of Chagall and the interiors of Van Gogh. On occasion suggesting a secret surrealist, perhaps an early Mirů, the manipulated scale of Yves Tanguy.
Two hundred and twenty-four paintings left behind and fifty-eight drawings, the only remaining record of his thoughts and yearnings, his solitary and reclusive epilogue, his loneliness complete after the passing of his wife.
As Gustav Klimt said: 'Whoever wants to know something about me... ought to look carefully at my pictures.'
"Hodgins managed to get a grant of £20 a year from the Walls Sausage Trust, which was sufficient to supply paint and equipment for both himself and his friend, Michael Sarjeant, a young student considered by (John) Mansbridge the most brilliant at Goldsmith since Graham Sutherland."
Elizabeth Rankin (1986) 'Biographical Notes Based on Reminiscences of the Artist,' in Robert Hodgins: Images 1953-1986
Michael (Kirkman) Sarjeant was born in London, which is also where he studied at the School of Art at the University of London. He received his National Diploma in Design, with painting, special level, in 1953. According to John Mansbridge, his senior lecturer, 'he proved himself an artist of exceptional ability and achievement'.
It was also in London where he met his South African wife, Mary Gabrielle - Gaby, Gaye or Gub Gub to Michael - a fellow student of the arts. After their marriage they returned to Waterkloof in Pretoria, where Gaby hailed from, and where they remained for the rest of their lives.
Michael lectured at the University of Pretoria for a period of time, 'fully capable of teaching classes in Drawing, Painting, Modelling, The History of Art and Architecture, and allied subjects', as his senior lecturer commended.
Etna Foxcroft met Michael and Gaby Sarjeant in her capacity as financial advisor, and by this time Michael has already become reclusive and agoraphobic, and Etna had to consult with them at their house instead of in her office. When Gaby, still Michael's muse and anchor, his beloved and friend, passed away, he called Etna early in the morning and said: 'I don't know who to call. I don't know what to do.' Etna, with the help of Michael's neighbour, Flip Klopper, became his lifeline to the world outside. She did his shopping and everything else required beyond his hermitic existence. He never left his house again until he died alone and childless in 2014, leaving all his artworks to Etna.
Michael Sarjeant - Do not peel away the black areas
Michael Sarjeant
"Do not peel away the black areas"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with breast and chair
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait with breast and chair"
Watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Summer I
Michael Sarjeant
"Summer I"
Watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Summer II
Michael Sarjeant
"Summer II"
Watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Charlie Bananas and the key Michael Sarjeant - Charlie Bananas and the key detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Charlie Bananas and the key"
and detail
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Coffee for the harpsichord player
Michael Sarjeant
"Coffee for the harpsichord player"
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Lollipops and tea cups
Michael Sarjeant
"Lollipops and tea cups"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Me with family Michael Sarjeant - Me with family detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Me with family"
and detail
Marker and ink on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Portrait with hat
Michael Sarjeant
"Portrait with hat"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - New world blue sky Michael Sarjeant - New world blue sky detail
Michael Sarjeant
"New world blue sky"
and detail
Marker and colour pencil on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Portrait of a shrinking man
Michael Sarjeant
"Portrait of a shrinking man"
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait without arms
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait without arms"
Watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with lips
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait with lips"
Watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The red wardrobe Michael Sarjeant - The red wardrobe detail
Michael Sarjeant
"The red wardrobe"
and detail
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The colours outside
Michael Sarjeant
"The colours outside"
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Tiny room gigantic key
Michael Sarjeant
"Tiny room gigantic key"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Interior with wind blowing through the door Michael Sarjeant - Interior with wind blowing through the door detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Interior with wind blowing through the door"
and detail
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Room 2000 with isolation screen Michael Sarjeant - Room 2000 with isolation screen detail Michael Sarjeant - Room 2000 with isolation screen detail 2
Michael Sarjeant
"Room 2000 with isolation screen"
and details
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with cigarette
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait with cigarette"
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Quiet self portrait
Michael Sarjeant
"Quiet self portrait"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Scary intrusion at tea time Michael Sarjeant - Scary intrusion at tea time detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Scary intrusion at tea time"
and detail
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Room with hook hat and time Michael Sarjeant - Room with hook hat and time detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Room with hook hat and time"
and detail
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait after Louise Bourgeois Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait after Louise Bourgeois detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait after Louise Bourgeois"
and detail
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with paisley tie
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait with paisley tie"
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Suburban lovers Michael Sarjeant - Suburban lovers detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Suburban lovers"
and detail
Marker and colour pencil on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Room with enormous key Michael Sarjeant - Room with enormous key detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Room with enormous key"
and detail
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The age of anxiety Michael Sarjeant - The age of anxiety detail Michael Sarjeant - The age of anxiety detail 2
Michael Sarjeant
"The age of anxiety"
and details
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The artist shrinking
Michael Sarjeant
"The artist shrinking"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The hand at the door
Michael Sarjeant
"The hand at the door"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - The monster
Michael Sarjeant
"The monster"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with tiny cats Michael Sarjeant - Self portrait with tiny cats detail
Michael Sarjeant
"Self portrait with tiny cats"
and detail
Marker and watercolour on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
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Michael Sarjeant - A room of my own
Michael Sarjeant
"A room of my own"
Marker on paper
59cm x 42cm
Unframed
R 950
Click here for purchase enquiry
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we hope you
enjoyed
the work!
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