Cecil Edwin Frans Skotnes was born in 1926 in East London. Skotnes served in the South African Forces in Italy. Before returning to South Africa he studied drawing under Heinrich Steiner in Florence.

Skotnes 1946 he studied at the Technikon Witwatersrand and from 1947 to 1950 he studied at the University of the Witwatersrand and obtained a BA(FA). In 1951 he visited Europe. On his return to South Africa he joined the Non-European Affairs Department of the Johannesburg City Council and was appointed cultural officer in charge of the Polly Street Art Centre which he ran until 1966.

In 1963 he succeeded Walter Battiss as the President of the SA Council of Artists and represented SA at the International Convention of Plastic Arts at UNESCO, New York. He was one of the founder members of the Amadlozi group. In 1966 he designed the Republic Festival Commemorative Stamp series. In 1968 his works were reproduced in Encyclopedia Britannica. He taught art at the Nyanga Art Centre and Community Arts Project in the Cape in the 1970s and 1980s.

Exhibitions:

1949: JAG (SAAcademy).

1950: JAG (SAAcademy).

1952: The Castle, Cape Town (Van Riebeeck Tercentenary Exhibition).

1954: Johannesburg (two-person exhibition with Larry Scully).

1956: (solo).

1957: Sao Paulo, Brazil (Biennale – graphics).

1958: Venice, Italy (Biennale).

I960: SA-tour (Second Quadrennial of SA Art).

Yugoslavia (SA Graphic Art).

1961: Sao Paulo, Brazil (Biennale).

1962: Wittenborn Gallery, New York, USA (Woodcuts).

1963-4: Johannesburg; Rome, Florence, Milan, Turin, Venice, Italy (Amadlozi Group).

1964: SA- tour (Third Quadrennial of SAArt).

Venice, Italy (Biennale).

1965: Grosvenor Gallery, London, UK (solo; SA Artists).

Johannesburg (Transvaal Academy).

1966: Pretoria (Republic Festival Exhibition).

Venice, Italy (Biennale).

1967: Sao Paulo, Brazil (Biennale).

1968: Gulbenkian Foundation, Lisbon, Portugal (Present-day SA Artists).

Venice, Italy (Biennale – graphics).

SA- tour. (SA Breweries Art Prize Exhibition).

1971: Cape Town (Republic Festival Exhibition).

JAG (Johannesburg Artists Prestige Diamond Jubilee Exhibition).

Holland; Belgium and West Germany (SA Graphic Art).

1972: PAM (Prestige Retrospective Exhibition).

Florence, Italy (Biennale – graphics).

1973: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1974: Athens, Greece (Contemporary SAArt).

Graz and Vienna, Austria and Tel Aviv, Israel (SA Graphic Art).

1975: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1976: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1977: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1979: Bonn and West Germany – tour (Art from SA/Art from Soweto). NSA, Durban; TAG (group).

1980: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1981: Cape Town (solo).

SANG (SA Printmakers).

1983: Goodman Gallery (solo).

1986: Goodman Gallery (two-person exhibition with John Skotnes).

1987: Goodman Gallery.

1988: JAG(Vita Art Now).

Awards:

1960: Quadrennial Exhibition (prize for catalogue).

1965: Transvaal Academy (gold medal).

1968: SA Breweries Art Prize (gold medal).

1971: Ciba-Geigy Mural Competition, Hyde Park, Johannesburg.

1972: Florence Biennale – Graphics (gold medal).

1976: SA Akademie vir Wetenskap en Kuns (medal of honour for painting).

1820 Settlers Foundation Award for contribution to painting in South Africa.

Commissions:

1961: Thabong Mission Church.

1965: Kroonstad Roman Catholic Cathedral.

1966: Republic Festival comememorative stamps. Western Bank Johannesburg.

1983: SA Airways(50thAnniversary).

1985-6: 1820 Settlers Monument.

Collections:

Anglo American Corporation New York, USA; Ann Bryant Art Gallery, East London; Caterpillar Tractor, USA; DAM; Hester Rupert Art Museum, Graaff-Reinet; JAG; Johannesburg Municipal Library; Kettering Gallery, UK; King George VI ; National Museum, Bloemfontein; PAM; RAU; Rembrandt Art Foundation, Stellenbosch; Royal Belgian Library, Brussels, Belgium; Royal Museum of Fine Arts, Copenhagen, Denmark; Sasol; Schlesinger Organisation, London, UK; SANG; Stuyvesant Foundation, Amsterdam, Holland; TAG; UNISA; UfBzi Print Cabinet, Florence, Italy; Van Leer Collection, Amsterdam, Holland; WITS; WHAG.
References:
• Sack, S. (1988). The Neglected Tradition, Johannesburg: Johannesburg Art Gallery.