RIP Dr. Hans Fransen 1931-2017

Very sad to hear about the passing of Dr. Hans Fransen yesterday afternoon (ex-VASSA chairman, champion of conservation and dedicated author, not to mention marathon runner and cyclist). His wonderful books on Cape vernacular architecture (along with Dr. Mary Cook) remain some of the most referred to sources for researchers. 
RIP Hans. You will be sorely missed.
His bio from the VASSA website:
“Art and architecture historian and author of seminal books on South African architecture such as the definitive The Old Houses of The Cape and The Old Buildings of the Cape co-authored with Mary Cook; The Old Buildings of the Cape (2004) and Old Towns and Villages of the Cape (2006), as well as standard reference works, including Guide to the Museums of Southern Africa (1978), Three Centuries of South African Art (1982), A Cape Camera (1994), plus Erik Laubscher, a Life in Art (2009).
He was involved in arts, culture and conservation after immigrating from Holland in 1955 – as curator of the Stellenbosch and Groot Constantia museums, assistant director of the SA National Gallery and until retirement, director of the Michaelis Art collection.
As well as a doctorate from the University of KwaZulu-Natal, he was awarded an honorary D.Phil. by the University of Stellenbosch and a knighthood by the Netherlands for his pioneering work. The fieldwork for one book alone which covers over 5 000 buildings and includes 700 photographs, required travelling 25 000 km by car and 5 000 km by bicycle. Good thing that he was a veteran of six Comrades Marathons and seventeen Argus Cycle Tours!”

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