Clement Seneque
Clement Seneque was born on 14 August 1896 in Mauritius and died on 30 April 1930 of pneumonia in Durban, South Africa. His family moved to Durban in the early 1900s and lived on Umbilo Road. Clement attended local schools. s a young man he lived with his three sisters on Botanic Gardens Road in Durban following the death of his father in 1914 and his mother in 1917. He served an architectural apprenticeship with a local firm, Chick and Bartholomew between 1915 and 1921 and became a registered member of the Natal Institute of Architects in 1917. Seneque received no formal art training. He exhibited his first picture of Durban Bay in 1918 and was a regular exhibitor at the Natal Society of Artists' annual show from 1920 onwards. He was an active member of the NSA sketch club. In his early years he experimented with pencil, charcoal, pastel and watercolour and by 1920 he had begun to formulate a style of his own influenced by the work of South African artists J.H. Pierneef and Gwelo Goodman.
In 1921 Seneque worked for Alfred Agache's architectural firm in Paris while living with his uncle. On 18 July 1923 he married Marie Therese L'Hoste. Seneque held his first solo exhibition at the Maison des Artistes in 1925 after which he returned to Durban at the request of his sisters. From 1925 to 1930 his status as an artist increased and he formulated the practice of developing studio paintings from sketches. In 1926 he became Vice-Chairman of the NSA and in 1927 he held his most comprehensive solo exhibition in Johannesburg. He worked as an architect until his death working on the Durban City of Vision project from 1928 - 29 and an Indian War Memorial. He died aged 33 years old. He is remembered for his keen observation of the lines and planes of natural elements and the awe inspiring perspective he was able to bring to his paintings of man-made structures. The Tatham Art Gallery held a retrospective exhibition of his work in 1969 and in 1984 an exhibition of Seneque's work toured the country. Examples of Seneque's work can be seen in the Durban Art Gallery, Johannesburg Art Gallery, Pretoria Art Museum, South African National Gallery, Tatham Art Gallery and the William Humphreys Art Gallery.

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