Organizers of Cape to Canton, the Chinese New Year Festival at the Vineyard Hotel on Sunday February 10, are rushing against the clock to track down Monika Pon (below) who was immortalized by Vladimir Tretchikoff as the world’s most sold print “China Girl” (500,000 and counting). They wish to invite Monika as guest of honour at their elegant garden banquet in a bowl. In the early 1970s, Monika Sing-Lee was working for her uncle’s Chinese laundry in Sea Point when approached by Tretchy and the rest is history.
An “original copy” is up for auction at Bonham’s in London in March and on the weekend, DIY billionaire Frank Cohen was quoted in the Guardian “there are now so many billionaires worldwide that it is only a matter of time before prices for a single contemporary work soar to $500m and beyond. ‘There’s not a million people out there that can buy these things, but enough to spend $100m and $200m for single works.’” So how much for an original copy? With SA wine desperate to sell into Asia, could Monika be the face that sells a thousand containers?
For tickets to Cape to Canton: https://www.quicket.co.za/events/1561-cape-to-canton-chinese-new-year/
Pon family is one of the old Chinese families in Jhb. Try Erwin Pon on 071 683 2562
it was 1951 not the early 1970′s. You can try the Mail and Guardian, they ran a piece a couple of years back by a chappie called Boris Gorlik who had come to South Africa to interview Monika.