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Sapphire ring tops Dreweatts & Bloomsbury luxury auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 18 December 2014 14:29

Designed by French jeweler Jean Schlumberger, this 30-carat sapphire and diamond ring soared to £117,800 ($184,978). Dreweatts and Bloomsbury Auctions image.

LONDON – Dreweatts and Bloomsbury Auctions achieved exceptional results in a day of luxury sales Nov. 27 at their London saleroom, with prices totaling over £1 million. Fierce International bidding saw stunning and iconic jewels by the master jewelers and high jewelry ateliers of the 20th century including Bulgari, Graff and Jean Schlumberger, steal the show and attain the top prices.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

An impressive 30-carat sapphire and diamond ring by French jeweler Jean Schlumberger brought a stunning end to the marathon sale. The last lot of the day flew past its estimate, eventually selling for £117,800 ($184,978).

Schlumberger’s jewels are regarded as some of the finest postwar jewelry design and, as proved with this sale, continue to be immensely popular with jewelry collectors today.

A turquoise and white enamel Serpenti watch by Bulgari was another highly desirable piece with 12 telephone bidders competing against the Internet and collectors in the room. The iconic watch, a favorite of actress Elizabeth Taylor, sold for £84,320 ($132,405).

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

Designed by French jeweler Jean Schlumberger, this 30-carat sapphire and diamond ring soared to £117,800 ($184,978). Dreweatts and Bloomsbury Auctions image.

This turquoise and white enamel Serpenti watch by Bulgari sold for £84,320 ($132,405). Dreweatts and Bloomsbury Auctions image.

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 December 2014 15:05
 

Imperial cinnabar lacquer box leads Roseberys auction at $47K

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Written by Auction House PR   
Monday, 15 December 2014 14:48

Rare 18th century Chinese red cinnabar lacquer quatrefoil box and cover that sold for £30,600 ($47,118). Roseberys image.

LONDON – Roseberys’ Dec. 10 fine art auction saw a rare and impressive 18th century cinnabar lacquer quatrefoil box and cover sell for an exceptional £30,600 ($47,118). LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

“We knew the quality of the materials and high level of craftsmanship used to create this stunning example would suggest that it was created for an emperor, but the price achieved for this piece confirms it must have been made for the imperial court,” said Roseberys Asian Art specialist Peter Greenway. It is extremely rare to see a piece of cinnabar of this size and quality from the Qinglong period, and the realized price exceeded any other UK record that we are aware of.”

The highly decorative box measures 27.2cm (10.9 inches) diameter and is decorated on the lid with figures in a landscape, seated and on looking figures all enclosed within floral panels. The base panels are decorated with deer, herons and other auspicious animals, all enclosed within continuous geometric pattern. Inside the box a gold four-character mark read “Precious Music Box” and on the base it had a six character Qinglong mark.

From a Dorset manor house the box had been unseen since the 1920s and had remained the property of a family with strong diplomatic connections. Four telephone lines and strong absentee bidding saw the box ultimately sell on the telephone to an oversees buyer [Lot 1577].

From the same manor house a rare cloisonné hat box with zitan hardwood stand and cover sold to a different international buyer for £20,400 ($38,322). A beautifully decorated and attractive example of some exceptional cloisonné work, the box is decorated with a central flower enclosed within bands of stylized scrolling foliage, bats and clouds. As with many other examples of Chinese artwork from the period bats are included to symbolize happiness, joy and good fortune, and the clouds are an auspicious symbol meaning longevity in good fortune.

A strong Asian Arts selection complemented by good results for both works of art and fine furniture where a pair of late 19th French Empire revival ormolu four light candelabra sold for £12,000 [lot 885] and a large and impressive French bronze model of Minerva driving a chariot by the sculptor Emmanuel Fremiet sold for £8,400. Fremiet is best known for his large-scale sculptures of animals, and was the leading sculptor of animals in his day. Many of his sculptures are displayed in public places France and include the first equestrian statue of Joan of Arc, erected in the Place des Pyramides, Paris in 1874, and “Jeune éléphant pris au piège” situated outside the Musée d'Orsay, also in Paris [Lot 870].

A 1920s Steinway mahogany grand piano trumped the furniture section of the sale. Founded in 1853 in New York City, Steinway & Sons pianos are an iconic brand, known for making high quality musical instruments. Built in 1924 at the peak of Steinway’s production the piano sold for £6,720. [Lot 1170]

A large and impressive Queen Anne Japanned trunk was also a strong contender, selling for £4,800. English copies of Japanese furniture first became popular in the late 17th century to fuel demand for Oriental furniture. The Dutch India Company began importing furniture and other works of art from Asian during the first half of the 17th century. Through these works the Orient was imagined to be a place of peace, tranquility and great beauty, and a growing fascination with art from the Far East fueled Western material desires.

Most popular with European consumer were objects with a glossy red or black lacquer that had been decorated with gilded scenes of Oriental life. European craftsman didn’t have access to lacquers from the East so they made use of the resins and pigments available to them, and adapted Western techniques such as gesso to replicate the fine gilt decoration. The term “japanned” relates only to furniture made in Europe in the style of Japanese lacquer work, of which this trunk is a fine example [Lot 1167].

View the fully illustrated catalog and register to bid absentee or live via the Internet as the sale is taking place by logging on to www.LiveAuctioneers.com.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

Rare 18th century Chinese red cinnabar lacquer quatrefoil box and cover that sold for £30,600 ($47,118). Roseberys image.

Imperial cloisonné enamel hatbox, 18th century. Price realized: £20,400 ($38,322). Roseberys image

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 December 2014 14:39
 

Large diamonds boost Moran jewelry auction past $1.2M

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Written by Auction House PR   
Friday, 12 December 2014 14:13

These branch-perched birds by Van Cleef & Arpels had hearts aflutter with their adorable styling and quality of craftsmanship, the brooch soared to a final selling price of $26,400 (estimate: $5,000- $7,000). John Moran Auctioneers image

ALTADENA, Calif. – In their final auction event of 2014, John Moran Auctioneers offered over 250 lots of fresh-to-the-market jewelry and luxury items to buyers on Dec. 9. With every piece carefully culled from private collection and estates, the majority of which were Southern California-based, the sale featured pieces with approachable price points of a few hundred dollars up through a fancy yellow diamond estimated to earn a quarter of a million dollars at the high estimate.

The sale was well-attended, with nearly every available chair at John Moran’s headquarters occupied by eager bidders. Online bidding was provided by LiveAuctioneers.com.

The aforementioned gold, enamel and micro-mosaic pendants, for example, were estimated to earn $600 to $800, but flew to a final price of $6,000 due in no small part to voracious online underbidding. Overall, big earners for the evening were designer pieces and diamonds of all shapes and sizes, as well as a few unexpected crowd favorites.

A number of high-karat gold pieces were on offer at Tuesday’s auction, including a number of Indian necklaces and bracelets. A high-karat gold and flat fan single-row Kasu mala necklace marked “Jaya Bangalore Luckshmi” was diligently sought by a floor bidder who had to compete with a number of online bidders to take the piece home. The selling price was $10,200, including the 20 percent buyer’s premium (estimate: $6,500 to $7,500). A different floor bidder snapped up the following lot, consisting of two Indian 22K gold serpentine chains and a matching bracelet, beating out multiple absentee bids in the process. The lot sold for an impressive $19,200, within the $15,000-$20,000 estimate.

Jade and coral pieces also appeared to be in high demand as the sale progressed. A multistrand tubular coral beaded torsade necklace, set with Indian 18K gold beads throughout, was estimated to earn $1,500-$2,000 at the block. The vibrantly colored piece caused a stir among online bidders, shooting to a selling price of $2,700 in mere moments after the auctioneer opened the lot. Shortly after, a graduated bead necklace of translucent mottled green jadeite jade, expected to bring between $3,000 and $5,000, jumped to $7,200 after an enamored telephone bidder jumped into the fray. An intriguing jadeite toggle, finely hand-carved with a parrot clutching a peanut in its claws and a string of beads in its beak was assigned an estimate of $5,000-$7,000, and performed respectably with a final selling price of $6,000.

Somewhat surprisingly, given the relatively soft market for pearls over recent years, a few lots featuring natural pearls did quite well at Moran’s Dec. 9 sale. Late in the catalog, a group of cultured and natural pearl jewelry assigned a conservative $800-$1,200 estimate found a new home for twice the expected high, while a strand of slightly graduated natural pearls earned an impressive $11,400 (estimate: $1,200 to $1,800).

Less surprisingly, diamonds of all shapes and sizes sparkled throughout the catalog, achieving competitive prices. One of the most highly anticipated lots, a natural fancy yellow diamond of 12.83 carats within a marquise- and full-cut diamond-studded platinum setting carried an estimate of $200,000-$250,000, with a floor bidder becoming the successful high bidder for a price square within that bracket: $228,000. A diamond and platinum ring centering an emerald-cut 3.05 carat diamond by celebrated designer Michael Beaudry, accompanied by a framed watercolor concept rendering, earned $36,000, after another floor bidder outbid a large number of absentee bids submitted prior to the auction (estimate: $18,000-$25,000). Carrying an estimate of $90,000-$120,000, a pear-shape diamond measuring 6.23 carats and mounted in platinum also exceeded expectations, selling for $180,000. A platinum and old European-cut diamond ring, a lot combining two Moran auction crowd favorites: diamonds and the Art Deco taste, did well, finding a buyer for $13,200 (estimate: $6,000-$8,000).

Silverhorn was a big name in the auction offerings. Pieces by the Santa Barbara maker attracted a lot of interest with sleek modern design and interesting stones. A large turquoise ring in a pierced 18K yellow gold setting was assigned an estimate of $1,000-$1,500, and the piece sold for $2,040. Shortly thereafter, a triangular Mexican fire opal cabochon ring in 18K hammered gold, estimated to earn $1,000-$1500, sold for $1,440. The big-ticket win for Silverhorn jewelry, however, went to an online buyer who had to compete with multiple parties bidding from the sales floor for a sleek coral cabochon in an 18K gold ring setting; the bids came through in rapid succession, landing on a $4,000 selling price (estimate: $1,000-$1,500).

Always a popular maker, pieces from Tiffany & Co. also inspired competitive bidding. During previews, a number of bidders were seen eyeing a Tiffany enamel and diamond stag beetle brooch. The realistically modeled statement piece earned a respectable $3,900 price tag, just over the $2,000-$3,000 estimate. On offer for those with tastes skewing more towards the botanical than the entomological, a signed hammered hand-made 20K gold rose-form brooch set with six full-cut diamonds carried an estimate of $1,200-$1,800, selling for $5,700. Shortly thereafter, a sterling silver box inset to the cover with a mesmerizing rectangular swath of iridescent blue art glass found a buyer for $1,800.

A large number of luxury men’s watches found new homes at Moran’s Dec. 9 sale, including pieces by Patek Philippe, Rolex, Corum, Baume & Mercier and Le Coultre. Early in the auction, a Patek Philippe 18K yellow gold rectangular case wristwatch went up at the block with a $6,000-$9,000 estimate, and came away with a price of $14,400, thanks to online bidder activity. An interesting Corum 1904 wristwatch with an American gold $20 Liberty coin as its face also sold for $3,900 (estimate: $1,500-$2,000). Late in the auction, an early Rolex covered-dial wristwatch with a .935 silver case and lid perked up buyers with its undeniable character. The watch earned $1,800 at the auction block (estimate: $1,000-$1,500).

For more information e-mail This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 626-793-1833.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

These branch-perched birds by Van Cleef & Arpels had hearts aflutter with their adorable styling and quality of craftsmanship, the brooch soared to a final selling price of $26,400 (estimate: $5,000- $7,000). John Moran Auctioneers image

With an estimate of $6,500-$7,500, this high-karat gold Indian Kasu mala necklace offered at Moran’s Dec. 9 Auction exceeded expectations, realizing $19,200. John Moran Auctioneers image

Selling for $228,000, within the $200,000 to $250,000 estimate, this platinum ring centering a 12.82 natural fancy yellow rectangular step-cut diamond was purchased by a floor bidder who had to compete with a number of hopeful absentee bidders. John Moran Auctioneers image

This hand-hammered rose brooch by iconic maker Tiffany & Co. was initially estimated to earn $1,200 to $1,800, but outgrew its estimate with a $5,700 selling price. John Moran Auctioneers image

Inset with a rectangular swath of iridescent blue art glass, this elegant sterling silver Tiffany & Co. box performed within the estimated $1,500 to $2,000 range, realizing $1,800. John Moran Auctioneers image

Featuring an 18K yellow gold case and movement by Patek Philippe, this men’s wristwatch earned $14,400 (estimate: $6,000-$9,000). John Moran Auctioneers image

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 December 2014 14:28
 

Gardner Civil War sketchbook captures $144,000 at Cowan’s

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Written by Auction House PR   
Friday, 05 December 2014 17:16
Fine quarter plate daguerreotype of Nathaniel Miller, a California pioneer. Price realized: $15,600. Cowan's Auctions Inc. image CINCINNATI – Cowan’s Auctions Inc. American History: Live Salesroom Auction on Nov. 21 was a success, with sales totaling over $800,000. The 302-lot auction was held in Cowan’s salesroom and featured scarce daguerreotypes, photographs of the American West, 19th century photography, manuscripts, books, maps, political campaign ephemera and flags.

The highest selling lot in the auction was one of the most important photograph sketchbooks of the Civil War. Alexander Gardner’s Photographic Sketchbook of the War by Philp & Solomons, 1865-1866, sold for $144,000.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

"Although small in size, Cowan's Nov. 21 American History Auction commanded a tremendous amount of interest and enthusiastic bidding,” said Katie Horstman, director, American History Department, “We are delighted with the strong prices that were achieved and couldn't be happier to end our 2014 auction year on a high note."

Exceptional documents and archives were also offered in the auction. An important Revolutionary War Naval document detailing the official record of the court martial of Captain Whipple, signed by John Paul Jones and other Naval and Marine Corps officers realized $51,600. A J.E.B. Stuart ALS, a handwritten and signed letter, sold for $14,400. A Thomas Stonewall Jackson endorsement on Kenton Harper ALS realized $15,990, and an archive of Col. Orland Smith, including war diaries, sword and escutcheon brought $18,000.

Fine books and manuscripts were highlighted in the Nov. 21 sale. An edition of Zebulon Pike’s Expeditions to the Sources of the Mississippi, dated to 1805-1807, realized $9,600, and a book detailing mathematical collections and translations by Thomas Salusbury sold for $20,400.

Photography displayed a strong performance in the auction. A scarce whole plate ambrotype of Capt. John Wilson of the 8th Kentucky Infantry sold for $9,000, a quarter plate daguerreotype of California pioneer Nathaniel Miller, realized $15,600, and a fine Annie Oakley cabinet card hammered down at $4,800.

Additional notable lots in Cowan’s Nov.21 American History Auction included an exceptionally rare Confederate cipher disc, which brought $18,000, and a rare William Henry Harrison campaign band box realized $5,700.

For more information about the auction call Katie Horstman at 513-871-1670 ext. 246.

View the fully illustrated catalog, complete with prices realized, online at LiveAuctioneers.com.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE
Fine quarter plate daguerreotype of Nathaniel Miller, a California pioneer. Price realized: $15,600. Cowan's Auctions Inc. image This rare Confederate cipher disk turned up $18,000. Cowan's Auctions Inc. image 'Gardner's Photographic Sketch Book of the War' sold for $144,000. Cowan's Auctions Inc. image
Last Updated on Friday, 12 December 2014 14:26
 

Dreweatts & Bloomsbury sells mysterious Sickert painting for £44,640

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Written by Auction House PR   
Friday, 05 December 2014 16:29

Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942), 'Vineyards,' 1941. The scene is Roman Road in Bath, with the crescent of The Paragon on the right and Vineyards on the left (roads in Bath are divided into named terraces.) Price realized: £44,640. Dreweatts & Bloomsbury image.

LONDON – One of Walter Sickert's last great paintings, a 1941 view in Bath titled Vineyards, captivated and mystified the art world when it was offered in the Modern & Contemporary British Art sale at Bloomsbury Auctions on Nov. 26. After frenetic bidding on the phone and in the room, the highly desirable work was finally secured by a private London collector for £44,640 ($70,001).

LiveAucitoneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

Vineyards was produced in the year prior to Sickert’s death, making it one of his last ever paintings. Geographically the work is a view of Roman Road in Bath, outside Bladud Buildings where Sickert had a studio in 1917. However, while the painting was on view at the auction house's Mayfair saleroom, the topographical relevance to Sickert and its execution in the final months of his life, fueled speculation about the mysterious shadowless figure hovering in the foreground of the painting. Perhaps this ghoulish figure, dressed in an Edwardian frock coat, was in fact the future spirit of the artist himself walking away from his studio for the last time, leaving behind him the uniformity and definition of the urban landscape on his final journey to the unknown.

Before turning to painting, Sickert began his working life in the theater as an actor, and throughout his artistic career his works incorporate illusions and optical tricks that belie a deeper fictional narrative. He was famously quoted as saying, “all the greater draughtsmen tell a story.” Perhaps this mysterious figure was the artist's last great acting role?

Vineyards was acquired directly from the artist by renowned music critic and personal friend Cecil Gray before Sickert died in 1942. Gray died in 1951 leaving the work to his only daughter, who proudly displayed it in her drawing room for the rest of her life. After her death in the late 1980s, it was lent to Southampton City Art Gallery for exhibition and storage purposes, where it remained until last month when it was put on display for sale at Bloomsbury Auctions.

Angus Maguire, head of modern and contemporary at Bloomsbury Auctions said; “This important work is one of Sickert’s very last paintings in what was an extraordinary career as a painter, one that continues to influence some of the most celebrated artists today.”

The sale also saw works on paper from the artist’s early career fly past their estimates. The drawings of actors, music halls and theaters from London's East End were reminiscent of his life as an actor. They were left with Andrina Schweder, the sister of Sickert’s second wife Christine Angus, after she died in 1920. The drawings relate closely to another group of sketches from 1922-3, with identical provenance that are now in the collection at Tate Britain.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942), 'Vineyards,' 1941. The scene is Roman Road in Bath, with the crescent of The Paragon on the right and Vineyards on the left (roads in Bath are divided into named terraces.) Price realized: £44,640. Dreweatts & Bloomsbury image.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 10 December 2014 15:32
 

Paintings, sterling silver exceed estimates at John Moran sale Nov. 18

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Written by Auction House PR   
Friday, 05 December 2014 15:46

Dated to the 18th century, or possibly earlier, this Spanish wrought-iron mounted vargueno, a cabinet-desk with fall front, found popularity among online buyers, earning a final price tag of $11,637.50, well over the $3,000 to $5,000 estimate. John Moran Auctioneers image

PASADENA, Calif. – The diverse offerings at John Moran Auctioneers’ Nov. 18 auction spanned an array of themes, decorative categories and countries of origin, including Continental silver, decorative arts, and furniture, American and Mexican silver, Modern prints and European paintings, Native American weavings and basketry, and Asian porcelain. The array of selections brought a large number of interested bidders to peruse the lots in person before bidding from the sales floor, an even larger number of Internet bidders.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

All sales figure include an approximately 20 percent buyer’s premium. Highlights were varied and some unexpected bidding wars ensued, however, Continental paintings, prints by Rufino Tamayo, and Tiffany’s Lap Over Edge flatware were in decidedly high demand.

Moran’s November catalog included a fabulous collection of Tiffany & Co. sterling silver flatware in the Lap Over Edge pattern. Patented in 1880 and phased out circa 1934, the iconic Lap Over Edge flatware features acid etched and engraved designs of flora and fauna, and was meant to be assembled so that no one piece had the same design as another in the set. The Nov. 18 auction catalog featured 25 lots of Lap Over Edge in total (24 of which hailed from a single Southern California estate); each brought a selling price well within or above estimate, many going to a single private collector. A set of dinner knives and forks for 12, featuring handles decorated with sea creatures and flowers, earned $5,700 – within the estimate of $4,000 to $6,000. Shortly after, a set of Lap Over Edge fish knives and forks, also for 12, each decorated with aquatic motifs, brought $7,200, equating to $300 per piece (estimate: $4,000- $6,000).

Mexican silver also proved enduring popularity with collectors. Three Hector Aguilar Aztec pattern sterling silver serving pieces, dated to 1955 – 1962, sold for $815.75 to an online buyer (est: $300 to $500). A hand wrought sterling silver flatware service for six by William Spratling, decorated with applied disks and bands of wrapped silver wire was assigned an estimate of $7,000 to $9,000, which was exceeded when the set sold to a Southern California collector for $11,400.

Select fine artworks earned stellar prices at the block. A work in oil on canvas by Dutch painter Jan Frederik Portielje (1829-1895), depicting an aristocratic woman feeding a finch, incited a bidding war between Internet bidders; the work finally sold for $9,840 to an Internet bidder via LiveAuctioneers (estimate: $4,000-$6,000). One of three portraits of Kinmont Hoitsma featured in the catalog, each executed by his former partner, artist Cecil Beaton (1904-1980 British) was a moody oil on canvas in subdued green, blue and purple hues. Expected to find a buyer for between $1,500 and $2,000, the painting went for $3,900. Paris Au Printemps by French painter Edouard Cortes (1882-1969), depicting pedestrians and carriages braving a rainy day before the Arc de Triomphe, carried an estimate of $20,000 to $30,000. The work just exceeded expectations, going to an online bidder for $33,825. A charcoal drawing by renowned South African artist Irma Stern (1894-1966) also created a stir among Internet bidders. Executed in 1945 (possibly during the artist’s trip to Zanzibar in that year), the drawing depicts a seated, draped woman, and sold online for $2,250 (estimate: $2,000 to $3,000). Late in the sale, a number of lithographs by Mexico-born modernist Rufino Tamayo achieved excellent sale prices. Indicative of the group, one work titled Hombre, estimated to earn $2,000 to $3,000, found a new home with a floor bidder for $2,756.

Small Continental decorative items offered some great highlights, including a pair of Bohemain cranberry lusters, which proved popular online. Decorated to reserves around the castellated rim with female portraits (a somewhat rare decorative element for such items), this piece was assigned a conservative estimate of $1,500 to $2,000, which was surpassed when the lusters sold for $3,000. One of a number of clocks in the auction, a Napoleon III gilt-bronze mantel clock stamped for maker Henri Picard (French, 1840-1890) featuring a spherical clock face and two lounging putti earned $5,020 at the block (estimate: $3,000-$5,000). Four lots composed of various sizes of charming porcelain pugs were offered in this auction – one lot included four figures by Meissen in a range of size and postures; the lot sold for $1,440 (estimate: $400 to $600). A jeweled Royal Vienna-style plate, hand-painted to the central reserve with diaphanously draped seated beauties, sold for $2,040 (estimate: $1,000- $1,500). While apparently unsigned, two cased miniature portraits on porcelain drew great attention from buyers across the United States and beyond. Inspiring a small bidding war between Internet bidders, the lot brought an impressive $2,280 (estimate: $800-$1,200).

Select furniture items brought interested parties out in force to the sales floor, including a Spanish wrought-iron mounted vargueno, which dates to the 18th century or earlier. Beautifully polychrome painted with bone inlay and gilt highlights, the piece was assigned a $3,000-$5,000 estimate, with a floor bidder casting the successful high bid, totaling $11,637.50. Pieces in the elegant Louis XVI style earned strong prices, such as the French gilt bronze-mounted mahogany vitrine attributed to celebrated cabinetmaker Francois Linke (1855-1946). While unsigned, the high level of craftsmanship helped push the sale price to $4,200 (estimate: $2,500-$4,000). A handsome pedestal clock, based on the model housed in the Empress Eugenie’s study during the reign of Napoleon III, with mounts signed by Louis-Auguste-Alfred Beurdeley (1805-1882 French), earned a $60,000 price (estimate: $30,000-$50,000). Sure to make a striking addition to one online buyer’s private collection, a Louis XVI-style gilt-bronze mounted marquetry table sold for $2,337, just over the $1,500 to $2,000 estimate.

Hand-painted Berlin KPM plaques never cease to excite buyers at John Moran Auctions. One such example, depicting a full-length portrait of Queen Louise von Mecklenburg-Strelitz of Prussia (after the work by early 19th century German artist Gustav Richter) was expected to sell between $5,000 and $7,000. The piece sold for $11,025.

Late in the auction, the sale of a highly anticipated late Classic Period Navajo child’s wearing blanket inspired a number of interested parties to bid via telephone. One such telephone bidder was the successful high bidder, taking ownership of the raveled American flannel and indigo-dyed green wool textile for a total of $19,200 (estimate: $5,000-$7,000).

A matched pair of Persian Isfahan rugs dating to the 1940s and each inscribed “Hekmad Nejad” to cartouches at the lower end earned a price above the $5,000-$7,000 estimate, selling for $13,200.

Any questions or inquiries may be directed to: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or to Moran’s offices via telephone: 626-793-1833.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

Dated to the 18th century, or possibly earlier, this Spanish wrought-iron mounted vargueno, a cabinet-desk with fall front, found popularity among online buyers, earning a final price tag of $11,637.50, well over the $3,000 to $5,000 estimate. John Moran Auctioneers image

One of 25 lots of Tiffany & Co.’s Lap Over Edge flatware, this set of fish forks and knives for 12 brought $7,200, equaling $300 per piece in the set. John Moran Auctioneers image

This portrait of American-born Olympic fencer and English literature teacher Kinmont Hoitsma by his partner, British artist Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), was expected to bring $1,500 to $2,000; the painting sold for $3,900. John Moran Auctioneers image

This untitled charcoal drawing by Irma Stern (South African, 1894-1966) found a buyer for $2,823.75 at Moran’s Nov. 18 auction. Estimate: $2,000-$3,000. John Moran Auctioneers image

This Henri Picard clock in the Napoleon III style was assigned an estimate of $3,000-$5,000, and brought $5,020. John Moran Auctioneers image

Handwoven from raveled American flannel and indigo-dyed green wool, this circa 1870-1880 late Classic Period Navajo child’s wearing blanket found a buyer for $19,200 at John Moran’s November Auction. Estimate: $5,000 to $7,500. John Moran Auctioneers image

Last Updated on Monday, 08 December 2014 17:44
 

Clars auction tops $2.5M, sets record for Diebenkorn artwork

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Written by Auction House PR   
Wednesday, 03 December 2014 16:42
The highlight of the fine art category and second highest lot of the sale was this European work, ‘Portrait of the Young Woman.’ This oil on board by Isaac Israels (Dutch, 1864-1934) soared past its estimate of $30,000-$50,000 to a monumental price of $95,200. Clars Auction Gallery image OAKLAND, CA – The exceptional results realized at Clars’ Nov. 15-17 Fine Art, Decoratives, Jewelry and Asian Art sale evidenced once again, the global market demand for investment-level art and antiques. The three-day sale generated more than $2.5 million, making it Clars’ largest November sale in their history and fourth largest sale overall. Bidding was strong across categories with some exciting surprises and a new world record set.

LiveAuctioneers.com provide Internet live bidding.

Furniture & Decorative Arts

The top lot of the sale that drew strong international attention and had multiple phone, floor and online bidders, was a Chinese gilt bronze triple-fusee eight-bell musical automaton bracket clock. The clock featured an enamel dial with Roman markers fronting the engraved quarter-strike movement and the automaton, which played hourly and depicted the eight immortals rotating around the crown. The lower section, showing foreign contributors to the court, was further decorated with waterfalls, rivers and moving ducks, all depicted in motion, with a rear glass window revealing the detailed movement with fine engraved embellishments, and the whole rising on cabriole legs, 34.5 inches high. Prior to the sale, the clock was estimated to achieve $25,000-$30,000 but aggressive bidding drove the final sale price to an astounding $130,900. Regarding the final sale escalating to over four times its high estimate, Deric Torres, vice president and director of furniture and decorative arts, commented that “the clock's advanced movement and scarcity definitely contributed to the aggressive global competition for this piece.”

Close to doubling its estimate was a monumental and important Hawaiian koa wood poi bowl (calabash), 18th century, which sold to an advanced local collector for $23,800. This bowl was the largest to surface at public auction on record, measuring 14.5 inches high by 17.5 inches wide. Selling for the high estimate to an East Coast collector was a pair of French Louis XV-style marble and ormolu mounted urns, 19th century, attributed to Maison Millet, Paris.

Turning to furniture, the highlight was an important seven-piece Emile Galle bedroom suite in the Art Nouveau taste, late 19th / early 20th century. Complete Galle bedroom suites are rare, and this suite sold well for $29,000. A pair of Italian Baroque inlaid commodes, late 17th century, also performed within estimate, selling for $10,700.

Modern furniture continued to bring strong prices, with the highlight being a Philip and Kelvin Laverne patinated bronze low table, having a rectangular scenic top depicting stylized Modernist figures. This form, which has only surfaced on three occasions at auction, realized $13,100. Furthering the modern offerings was a selection of Warren Platner furniture, including a dining suite and a pair of ‘1725’ easy chairs with ottoman. This group sold well for $16,400.

Fine Art

The highlight of the fine art category and second highest lot of the sale was the European work Portrait of the Young Woman. This oil on board by Isaac Israels (Dutch, 1864-1934) soared past its estimate of $30,000-$50,000 to achieve a monumental price of $95,200. With Israels leading the way, Dutch paintings fared well in general with Church Interior (1673), by Daniel de Blieck (1620-1673) fetching $22,610 and a delicate still life by Simon Pietersz Verelst (1644-1721) realizing $13,100. As Rick Unruh, vice president and director of fine art at Clars remarked, “The extraordinary provenance of both the Israels and the De Blieck being associated with renowned art dealer Jacques Goudstikker made these two paintings very desirable to our global clients.”

Continuing the surge of European art sales, a large yet mesmerizing oil on canvas titled, Twins by Norwegian artist, Odd Nerdrum (b. 1944), achieved an impressive $71,400, the highest price paid at auction for this artist in the United States. Russian paintings sold solidly. The highlight of that category was a bold and vibrant painting by Nikolai Petrovich Bogdanov-Bel'sky (1868-1945) titled, Path Through the Birches, which fetched a surprising $20,230 thanks to competition from all over the world.

World records are indeed remarkable achievements. Clars broke yet another in the art world on Nov. 16 with a spectacular color etching with aquatint and drypoint by Richard Diebenkorn (American, 1922-1993) titled Red-Yellow-Blue (1986), achieving $47,600. Second to Diebenkorn’s result in the postwar, modern and contemporary prints category was Pepto-Caviar Hollywood (1970), a most unusual screenprint with Pepto-Bismol and caviar in colors by Ed Ruscha (American, b. 1937) which eased the stomachs of global bidders coming in at an impressive $16,660. Finally rounding out the impressive postwar American category was Louise Nevelson’s (American, 1899-1988), Untitled, 1957, painted wood sculpture, that achieved a solid $47,600.

Asian Art & Antiques

The Asian art and antiques offerings generated over $500,000, fueled in great part by the demand for the Chinese huanghuali furniture. The highest selling piece was a huanghuali rounded corner cabinet, which came to the sale with an estimate of $25,000-$45,000 but sold for $77,400. More than doubling the high estimate, a pair of Chinese huanghuali hardwood armchairs that featured an openwork lattice pattern achieved $65,000. The additional huanghuali furniture offered from the collection of an American diplomat accounted for a total of $400,000. A Chinese jade handling piece carved with prunus, 2 inches wide by about 3 inches high, also performed well selling for $10,300 to an Internet bidder via LiveAuctioneers.com

Jewelry & Timepieces

The jewelry and timepieces category performed brilliantly in November. The top dazzler was a pair of diamond and platinum hoop earrings signed G. Arzilli, Italy, which achieved $44,600. Patek Philippe commanded second place with an Art Deco enamel and diamond lapel watch, circa 1925, commanding $35,700. Selling for the same price was another Art Deco design, a stunning sapphire, diamond and platinum French bracelet, circa 1920. Coming in just below, was a jadeite, diamond and platinum ring that achieved $32,700.

Clars Auction Gallery’s next Fine Art, Decoratives, Jewelry and Asian Art Auction will be held Dec. 13- 15. For more information email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE
The highlight of the fine art category and second highest lot of the sale was this European work, ‘Portrait of the Young Woman.’ This oil on board by Isaac Israels (Dutch, 1864-1934) soared past its estimate of $30,000-$50,000 to a monumental price of $95,200. Clars Auction Gallery image This rare Chinese gilt bronze triple-fusee eight-bell musical automaton bracket clock more than tripled its high estimate due to aggressive global bidding. It sold for over four times its high estimate, achieving $130,900. Clars Auction Gallery image This monumental poi bowl (calabash), 18th century, sold for almost twice its estimate for $23,800. Clars Auction Gallery image Executed in the Art Nouveau taste, this important Emile Galle bedroom suite achieved an impressive $29,000. Clars Auction Gallery image ‘Twins’ by Norwegian artist, Odd Nerdrum (b. 1944), achieved an impressive $71,400. Clars Auction Gallery image Clars set another record in the art world for Richard Diebenkorn (American, 1922-1993) with his spectacular color etching with aquatint and drypoint, ‘Red-Yellow-Blue (1986),’ which sold for $47,600. Clars Auction Gallery image The highest selling piece in the Asian offerings was this huanghuali rounded corner cabinet that came to the sale with an estimate of $25,000-$45,000 but sold for $77,400.Clars Auction Gallery image More than doubling the high estimate, this pair of Chinese huanghuali hardwood armchairs achieved $65,000. Clars Auction Gallery image The reigning highlight of the jewelry offerings was this pair of diamond and platinum hoop earrings, G. Arzilli, Italy, set with rectangular step cut diamonds totaling approximately 36.50 carats. The pair sold for $44,600. Clars Auction Gallery image
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 December 2014 17:05
 

Guests received VIP treatment at Palm Beach Modern’s Nov. 1 Art Auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Wednesday, 03 December 2014 12:05
The catered luncheon included a dessert table with cookies shaped like artists’ palettes, and Rice Krispy treats resembling paintbrushes dipped into paint. Palm Beach Modern Auctions imageWEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – On November 1st, Palm Beach Modern Auctions (PBMA) held a $650,000 auction of modern art, decorative art and sculpture, with Internet live bidding through LiveAuctioneers. But if you had blinked, you might have thought the ruby slippers had just transported you to Hollywood for a red-carpet soiree.

Outside, there was complimentary valet service. Whether arriving in a Rolls or a minivan, everyone was treated like royalty arriving for a state event. Just inside the door, three staff members greeted guests and directed them into the exhibition space, which was filled with the types of modern and contemporary art so popular with south Florida’s rich and famous. Everything looked sleek, chic and ready to be white-glove-transported to one of those fabulous abstract glass mansions that dot the islands and coastline of the Sunshine State.

Known for their gracious hospitality – in addition to their expertise in modern and contemporary art – PBMA co-owners Rico Baca and Wade Terwilliger outdid themselves with a complimentary catered, art-theme spread that included:

• Sun-dried tomato wraps with yellow curried chicken salad or grilled veggies, pesto and goat cheese for the vegetarians

• Yellow bell pepper wraps with roast beef, horseradish cream, spinach and arugula

• Green spinach wraps with oven-roasted turkey, spinach, roasted red bell peppers and bacon

• Individual crudités of colorful fresh veggies with Green Goddess dip

• Roasted orzo salad and multi-colored vegetable chips

• And for dessert – frosted butter cookies shaped like artists’ palettes, mini cupcakes, and dipped Rice Krispy treats shaped like paint brushes on stick

More than 100 registered bidders were in attendance for the 300-lot Art & Sculpture Auction, with another 442 bidders from 15 countries participating online through LiveAuctioneers. The phone lines buzzed with activity from bidders in Switzerland, Italy, France, Kuwait, Austria, Spain, Canada, Brazil, and of course, the USA. Records were set throughout the sale for works by individual artists. "There wasn’t a hint of weakness noticeable in any category, but sculptures put in an especially strong performance," said Baca, who also presided as auctioneer. The auction total was $650,000 (all prices quoted include 20% buyer's premium).

A few of the items believed to have set auction records included:

Lot 125 – Monumental Harry Bertoia sculpture, $48,800 ($40,000 hammer) (record for Bertoia sculpture using “spill cast” technique)

Lot 116 – Hisao Domoto painting, $43,200 ($36,000 hammer) (record for the artist)

Lot 132 – Jesus Rafael Soto wall sculpture, signed edition, $21,960 ($18,000 hammer) (record for a form from this edition)

Lot 119 – Henry Moretti original sculpture, $8,540 ($7,000 hammer) (record for the artist)

Lot 108 – Original Paul Jenkins artwork, $12,200 ($10,000 hammer) (record for a black and white ink-on-paper work by this artist)

Lot 117 – Renato Freitas original abstract painting, $13,420 ($11,000 hammer) (contemporary artist, first time at auction)

Lot 186 – Pair of Wilhelm Kage “Argenta” chargers, $4,270 ($3,500 hammer) (artist record for this particular form)

Although not a world auction record, the $25,620 ($21,000 hammer) price paid for Lot 256, an Angel Botello painting, was a head-turner.

You didn’t have to spend a fortune to acquire a quality modern or contemporary artwork, as there were some very nice editions available. Three signed “Structure” silkscreens by Larry Dinkin (first time at auction) went for $1,830 ($1,500 hammer) each. Another auction first-timer was Gavin Rain, whose signed and boxed lithograph – perhaps an homage to Marilyn Monroe – achieved $976 ($800 hammer). A large and super-cool abstract tapestry by Brazilian artist Genaro de Carvalho (1926-1971) went for $3,416 ($2,800 hammer).

“We were very pleased with the results of our first art-only auction,” Baca said. “Overall, there was incredible growth, including in the number of bidders and average price realized per lot. We attribute a lot of this success to the effort our team puts into every step of the auction process, from designing a beautiful catalog to creating a really nice atmosphere for those who attend our sales in person. And, of course, we work very hard to obtain consignments that are exactly what collectors are seeking in today’s marketplace.”

To contact Palm Beach Modern Auctions, call 561-586-5500 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

View the fully illustrated catalog for Palm Beach Modern's Nov. 1 auction, complete with prices realized, at www.LiveAuctioneers.com.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE
The catered luncheon included a dessert table with cookies shaped like artists’ palettes, and Rice Krispy treats resembling paintbrushes dipped into paint. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image Three monumental Harry Bertoia sculptures were offered, including (at center) one that set an auction record for a work by the artist using the spill cast technique. It sold for $48,800 ($40,000 hammer). Palm Beach Modern Auctions image A massive Red Grooms (American, b. 1937-) painting titled ‘Franz Kline’ dominated one wall in the exhibition center. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image Hisao Domoto’s (Japanese, b. 1928-) painting titled ‘…De Cotinuite’ sold for $43,920 ($36,000 hammer), which is believed to be a an auction record for the artist. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image A monumental Eric Grate (1896-1983) bronze outdoor sculpture made a big impression on auction guests. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image An Ernest Trova screen or room divider – a commissioned piece – looked fantastic in a composition that included a pair of crimson Gio Ponti armchairs, which were to be sold in a subsequent auction, on November 22nd. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image  Works by contemporary Chinese artist Zhou Weihua (b. 1970-), shown on wall at left, and Alexander Calder (right, top and bottom) added pop to this corner. Table and chairs by Rudi Bonzanini were to be sold in PBMA’s Nov. 22 auction. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image Jesus Rafael Soto (Venezuelan, 1923-2005), sculpture of metal and wood, $21,960 ($18,000 hammer), a record for a form from this particular edition. Palm Beach Modern Auctions image
Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 December 2014 16:57
 

American Indian crafted jewelry in high demand at Allard auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Tuesday, 25 November 2014 17:00
Early 1970s 14K gold necklace with custom beads, squash blossoms and spiderweb turquoise stone. Price realized: $5,750. Allard Auctions Inc. image MESA, Ariz. – An early 1970s 14K gold necklace set with a #8 spiderweb turquoise stone sold for $5,750 at Big Fall Phoenix, an auction held Nov. 8-9 by Allard Auctions Inc. Approximately 800 lots of American Indian artifacts, art and related collectibles came up for bid.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

The original, one-of-a-kind, 26-inch-long necklace – co-designed by Andrew of Scottsdale and Alexander, Artist in Gold – boasted 26 custom beads and squash blossoms. The naja – the inverted crescent pendant on squash-blossom necklaces, a term coined by the Navajo – was set with a beautiful turquoise stone. The sides were Lone Mountain. The necklace was the top lot of the auction.

“Jewelry was strong across the board, so it didn’t surprise me the necklace did well,” said Steve Allard of Allard Auctions Inc. “Rugs and weavings were also a hit and a couple of the beadwork pieces from a collection in Nebraska got attention.” Some of the other major categories included handmade baskets, Kachina carvings, pottery and clothing. Allard called the auction a success.

Following are additional highlights from the auction. For publication purposes, all prices quoted include a 15 percent buyer’s premium, although the percent may have actually been different on some items, depending on how the bid was placed.

A rare, circa-1980s black-on-black San Ildefonso water bowl, or “spirit bowl,” by Carmelita Dunlap, with cutout access and accompanying ladle changed hands for $2,587. Its cut-in steps represented kiva steps. The bowl was in very good condition except for a tiny scratch and measured 7¼ inches by 11¼ inches.

An early 20th century, hand-crafted white buckskin Mandan war shirt set with matching leggings – both items featuring colorful, finely quilled ornaments, human hair suspensions and painted horseshoes – hammered for $1,840. The set was in excellent condition. The shirt measured 34 inches by 29 inches, while the leggings measured 35 inches by 12 inches.

A circa-1900 deep hard-sided Klickitat basket with intact rim loops and an interior containing 18 rare female figures, in fine condition, rose to $2,300. A Navajo rug made by Agatha Garnenez and measuring 38 inches by 66 inches, with some details – a Two Grey Hills runner – went for $1,955. The weaving won an award at the 1962 Arizona State Fair.

An outstanding pair of fancy parade gloves, or gauntlets, with extended beaded tops having fine floral motifs, well-worn but with the beadwork in very good condition, realized $2,587; and a circa 1970s all-silver squash-style cross Pueblo necklace with sandcast features, turquoise stones and early bench-made dime beads, 33 inches long and in very good condition, breezed to $1,840.

An early 1900s pair of sinew sewn and lazy stitch Arapaho beaded hard-soled moccasins, with a great design and only minor bead loss, went for $1,840. A hand-carved “Tlingit Chief” Shonaha doll, wearing a Chilkat blanket and with a fine Lelooska carved Potlach hat and staff, hit $2,185. A circa-1900 old sinew sewn and lazy stitch beaded two-sided buffalo hide Sioux pipe-and-tobacco bag with traditional geometric designs and faded quilled slat suspensions made $2,415.

Allard Auctions Inc., based in St. Ignatius, Mont., has been selling exclusively American Indian artifacts, art and related collectibles at auction since 1968. The firm is always accepting quality merchandise for future auctions. To inquire about consigning a single piece, an estate or an entire collection, call them at 406-745-0500 or 888-314-0343; or send an e-mail to This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalog for this sale, complete with prices realized.


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE
Early 1970s 14K gold necklace with custom beads, squash blossoms and spiderweb turquoise stone. Price realized: $5,750. Allard Auctions Inc. image Beautiful hand-crafted white buckskin Mandan war shirt and matching leggings, circa early 1900s. Price realized: $1,840. Allard Auctions Inc. image Rare black-on-black San Ildefonso water bowl, or spirit bowl, by Carmelita Dunlap, circa 1980s. Price realized: $2,587. Allard Auctions Inc. image Early 1900s pair of sinew sewn and lazy stitch Arapaho beaded hard-soled moccasins, with only minor bead loss. Price realized: $1,840. Allard Auctions Inc. image Outstanding pair of fancy parade gloves, or gauntlets, with extended beaded tops having fine floral motifs. Price realized: $2,587. Allard Auctions Inc. image Circa-1900 deep hard-sided Klickitat basket with intact rim loops and an interior containing 18 rare female figures. Price realized: $2,300. Allard Auctions Inc. image Navajo rug made by Agatha Garnenez and measuring 38 inches by 66 inches. Price realized: $1,955. Allard Auctions Inc. image Circa 1970s all-silver squash-style cross Pueblo necklace with sand cast features and turquoise stones. Price realized: $1,840. Allard Auctions Inc. image Hand-carved ‘Tlingit Chief’ Shonaha doll, wearing a Chilkat blanket with a fine Lelooska carved Potlach hat and staff. Price realized: $2,185. Allard Auctions Inc. image Circa 1900 old sinew sewn and lazy stitch beaded two-sided buffalo hide Sioux pipe-and-tobacco bag. Price realized: $2,415. Allard Auctions Inc. image
Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 November 2014 09:32
 
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