Sean O’Toole | Apollo | 19th March 2021
Stern was the classic insider / outsider. She was born in rural South Africa but grew up in Germany. Returning to Capetown after WW1, her modernist style ruffled feathers as did her respectful portraiture of black Africans. After WW2 her acclaim (and white skin) brought support from the Afrikaner government, while she also supported the anti-apartheid cause. Her work, with its contradictory back story, “speaks loudly to our contemporary moment”.