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Max Ernst, Rosetta works leave impression at Capo Auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Monday, 16 June 2014 14:33

Max Ernst (German, 1891-1976), 'Homme,' silver cast sculpture, conceived in 1960, cast by 1970. Price realized: $60,000. Capo Auction Fine Art and Antiques image.

NEW YORK – Capo Auction Fine Art and Antiques’ final spring auction on Saturday, May 31, featured two sculptures that generated a lot of attention leading up to the sale.

All items were available via Internet live bidding through LiveAuctioneers.

The impressive 5-foot-high Rosetta (Jan Schockner) (American, 20th century) bronze Vigilance, also known as the MGM Lion, on a marble base, which was signed, dated 1996 and numbered 1/10, sold for $9,000.

The much sought after Max Ernst (German, 1891-1976) silver cast sculpture titled Homme that was conceived in 1960 and cast by 1970 sold for $60,000. It’s from an edition of 1/6 with two artist's proofs, was stamped with signature and numbered exemplaire d' auteur 2/2. It carries the serial number 1523/1848 (on underside) and is stamped with silversmith's mark on the back of the base. This sculpture stands 11 1/4 inches high and includes a custom fitted box and certificate of authenticity issued by Pierre Hugo.

Capo Auction’s other Max Ernst sculpture, this one in bronze with black patina, sold for $18,000, much higher than its $ 8,000-$10,000 estimate. Cheri Bibi was conceived in 1964 and cast before 1973, having been cast by Valsuani Paris. It’s signed, numbered 62/175 and stamped by foundry (on plinth), standing 13 1/4 inches.

Both Max Ernst pieces came from come from a prominent Manhattan collector and was acquired from Galerie Frederic Gollong, St. Paul-de-Vence by the family of the present owner in 1992.

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

Max Ernst (German, 1891-1976), 'Homme,' silver cast sculpture, conceived in 1960, cast by 1970. Price realized: $60,000. Capo Auction Fine Art and Antiques image.

Rosetta (Jan Schockner) (American, 20th century), 'Vigilance (MGM Lion),' bronze with marble base, 1996, signed, dated and numbered 1/10, height 60 inches. Price realized: $9,000. Capo Auction Fine Art and Antiques image.

Max Ernst (German, 1891-1976),  sculpture 'Cheri Bibi,' bronze with black patina, conceived in 1964 and cast before 1973, cast by Valsuani, Paris. Price realized: $18,000. Capo Auction Fine Art and Antiques image.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 June 2014 14:44
 

Chinese bronze vessel sells for $722,500 at Hindman auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Monday, 16 June 2014 09:36
Chinese bronze ritual gong vessel having a fitted cover depicting a horned beast. Price realized: $722,500. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image. CHICAGO – A Chinese bronze ritual gong vessel sold for $722,500 at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers’ Wednesday, June 11 sale of Asian Works of Art from the Collection of Phillip and Kay Cha.

Leslie Hindman Auctioneers followed up on Thursday, June 12 with an “Asian Marketplace” auction, again with impressive results bolstered by online bidding through LiveAuctioneers.com. On that day a LiveAuctioneers.com bidder created excitement by buying a Chinese polychrome decorated ceramic figure of a lama estimated at $400-$600 for $266,200.

LiveAuctioneers.com facilitated Internet bidding for both auctions.

Online bidders utilizing LiveAuctioneers.com made their presence known in Hindman’s “Asian Marketplace” session, adding $407,255 to the gross. The sell-through rate by number of lots purchased by LiveAuctioneers bidders was a substantial 44.24 percent. Just over 3,400 visitors viewed the online catalog for Thursday's event. More than 380 absentee bids were placed through LiveAuctioneers for Hindman's Asian Marketplace sale, and there were 982 underbids from online bidders.

Wednesday's session featured Chinese works of art assembled by Phillip and Kay Cha over a period of more than 30 years. The sale included paintings, ceramics and furniture from both their private collection and Asian House, their Chicago gallery.

The auction’s top three lots on Wednesday alone grossed more than a million dollars. The gong vessel attracted numerous buyers who flew into Chicago to view it firsthand, and had been in the Chas’ personal collection for several years after having been purchased decades ago from the storied Gurie Gallery in Montreal.

A gui vessel, also with Gurie Gallery provenance, sold for $266,500; and a yu, an unusual ritual vessel covered with pointed "bosses," each brought $182,500. Both bronzes bear archaic inscriptions and were part of the Chas’ personal collection, kept and admired in their Chicago home for several years.

“Mr. and Mrs. Cha are two of the warmest, most generous, and intelligent people that anyone could meet. The success of this auction reflects their discerning taste and intuition in this field,” said Phyllis Kao, director of Asian works of art at Leslie Hindman Auctioneers.

Another highlight of the sale was an important Chinese painting on silk, which sold for $55,440 after a long struggle between telephone and online bidders. The painting depicted Vanavasa meditating in a grotto, and once hung in the Chas’ sitting room.

Click here to view the fully illustrated catalogs for these sales, complete with prices realized, on LiveAuctioneers.com.

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

Chinese bronze ritual gong vessel having a fitted cover depicting a horned beast. Price realized: $722,500. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image.

Chinese polychrome decorated ceramic figure of a lama, 13 3/4 inches. Price realized: $266.200. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image.

Chinese bronze ritual gui vessel, early Western Zhou style. Price realized: $266,500. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image.

Bronze yu ritual food vessel. Price realized: $182,500. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image.

Chinese painting on silk of Vanavasa meditating, anonymous, late Song Dynasty or later. Price realized: $55,440. Leslie Hindman Auctioneers image.

Last Updated on Monday, 16 June 2014 16:06
 

Webb cameo glass vase brings $260K at Woody Auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 12 June 2014 13:23

This signed Thomas Webb & Sons finely carved English cameo art glass vase soared to $260,000. Woody Auction image.

WICHITA, Kan. – A finely carved English cameo art glass vase by Thomas Webb, 9 1/2 inches tall and boasting a figural rendering signed “G. Woodall 1887,” soared to $260,000 at Part 2 of the sale of the lifetime collection of porcelain and fine art glass gathered by the late Dr. Ernest Rieger and his wife Karin, held May 29.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

The auction was conducted by Woody Auction of Douglass, Kan. It was the highest price ever paid for a single item at a Woody Auction sale – no small feat considering the firm has been conducting auctions in the Midwest for decades. The firm also conducted the Part 1 auction, which grossed $1.3 million.

Part 2 did even better, grossing $1.8 million, helped along, of course, by the museum-quality Webb vase, which carried an estimate of $50,000-$100,000. “We knew we had something special, and we fully expected it to reach and surpass $100,000, but when it climbed as high as it did, we were just astounded,” said Jason Woody of Woody Auction. “But it truly is a remarkable vase.”

Thomas Webb & Sons was founded in England in 1842. It was known for the high quality of its cameo glass. The example in the auction had been pictured in the book English Cameo Glass by Grover. Woodall’s figural depiction was titled The Origin of Painting. The vase was signed by both Webb and Woodall. The buyer was a collector from West Virginia.

“Even though the top lot was a piece by Thomas Webb, it was the Tiffany people who really drove this sale,” Woody said. “They hadn’t seen such high quality glass come available in a long time. And the audience was literally worldwide. We had a Japanese man and his secretary fly in just for the auction, and he ended up spending $50,000. Many bids poured in from the UK, too.”

By day’s end, 432 lots had come up for bid and found new owners (it was an absolute auction; everything sold, regardless of price). About 150 people attended the event in person; around 95 of those held bidder numbers. Another 850 registered to bid online via LiveAuctioneers.com. Bids were fielded from as many as 45 countries, and many absentee (or left) bids were recorded.

Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted are hammer. There is no buyer’s premium at a Woody Auction.

Two lots tied for runnerup honors, at $45,000 each. One was another Thomas Webb & Sons English cameo art glass vase, signed “G. Woodall.” The 8 1/2 inch vase had a blue background with carved white opal overlay featuring a young lady and a bird. The other lot was a 17 1/4-inch-tall signed Tiffany art glass vase with a beautiful red body and green iridescent decorated neck.

Right behind, at $44,000, was an outstanding 13 3/4-inch signed Tiffany Favrile decorated vase with a superior red iridescent body having a Tel-El-Amarna Egyptian decorated foot and neck. One other lot cracked the $40,000 mark – yet again, a Thomas Webb unmarked 8 1/4-inch gem cameo art glass English cameo vase, with a Woodall scene titled Mischief. It went for $41,000.

A 37 1/2-inch signed Moser two-part pedestal vase – the finest piece of Moser that Woody Auction has ever offered – featuring a yellow opaque background with extensive multi-color leaf and applied acorn décor, climbed to $38,000. Also, a 25 1/2-inch by 20-inch marked KPM porcelain plaque – the largest KPM porcelain plaque Woody Auction has ever offered – with an outstanding scene featuring The Sacrifice of Jephthah’s Daughter, set in a gilt wooden frame, gaveled for $15,000.

A rare 4-inch signed Tiffany Favrile red paperweight vase, bulbous in shape and identical to the example featured in Art Glass Nouveau by Grover, breezed to $36,000; and a 14 1/4-inch signed Tiffany Favrile paperweight art glass vase having a clear background with an orange blossom and green floral stem décor (also as seen in Art Glass Nouveau) rose to $25,000.

A signed Tiffany Favrile art glass footed vase with a beautiful red body and foot with decorative iridescent band around the neck made $31,000; and a 9 3/4-inch-tall signed Tiffany art glass vase having a yellow-green background with iridescent gold and green leaf and vine décor, earned $32,000. Also, a cranberry opalescent art glass oval footed vase, 8 1/4-inches tall and having a fantastic enameled and beaded tapestry coralene decoration of a peacock, commanded $3,000.

A magnificent 21-inch signed “Thomas Webb & Sons Gem Cameo” English cameo vase (also signed “Tiffany & Company” and “Paris Exposition 1889”), with a lovely cranberry background, hammered for $31,000. Also, an exceptional 18-inch signed Galle French cameo art glass vase, deep green with a brown cameo carved overlay and forest and insect décor, coasted to $6,000.

Two lots achieved identical selling prices of $18,000. One was a rare 12 1/2-inch Mount Washington decorated Burmese “Monkey” vase with a hard-to-find monkey and ape décor with bamboo background, in excellent quality and condition. The other lot was a must-see 9 3/4-inch signed Daum Nancy French cameo art glass vase boasting an outstanding autumn season décor.

“Part 2 was about equal to Part 1 in terms of quality of merchandise,” Jason Woody said. “We literally pulled items for Part 1 from the left side of the Riegers’ many display cabinets, and the items for Part 2 came from the right side of the cabinets. Part 3 will feature what’s still in the cabinets, plus the cabinets.” Part 3 will be held Aug. 1-2.

For details phone Woody Auction at 316-747-2694 or 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.

 

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

This signed Thomas Webb & Sons finely carved English cameo art glass vase soared to $260,000. Woody Auction image.

Rare 17 1/4-inch-tall Tiffany Favrile art glass body with beautiful fed body and decorated neck. Price realized: $45,000. Woody Auction image.

Signed Tiffany Favrile red paperweight vase, bulbous in shape and standing 4 inches tall. Price realized: $36,000. Woody Auction image.

Unmarked Thomas Webb & Sons English cameo art glass vase with carved white opal overlay Price realized: $45,000. Woody Auction image.

Mount Washington decorated Burmese ‘Monkeyvase' with monkey and ape decor, bamboo background. Price realized: $18,000. Woody Auction image.

Magnificent and large KPM porcelain plaque depicting ‘The Sacrifice of Jephthah’s Daughter.’ Price realized: $15,000. Woody Auction image.

Signed Moser two-part pedestal vase with yellow opaque background and leaf and applied acorn décor. Price realized: $38,000. Woody Auction image.

Signed Daum Nancy French cameo art glass vase with outstanding fall season decor, 9 3/4 inches tall. Price realized $18,000. Woody Auction image.

Last Updated on Friday, 13 June 2014 15:04
 

Longines watch the surprise of Cottone auction at $50,600

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Written by Auction House PR   
Wednesday, 11 June 2014 16:33

The top lot of the auction was this rare and handsome men’s Longines wristwatch from the 1940s, which sold for $50,600, inclusive of the buyer’s premium. Cottone Auctions image.

GENESEO, N.Y. – A rare, handsome men’s Longines wristwatch, originally purchased around the time of World War II and descended in the same Buffalo, N.Y., family ever since, sold for $50,600 at an Advertising, Scientific and Art Auction held May 31 by Cottone Auctions. The watch was easily the auction’s top lot.

LiveAuctioneers.com proived Internet live bidding.

“I’m not sure if this was a new auction record for a men’s Longines watch, but if not I’m sure it came close,” said Matt Cottone of Cottone Auctions. The watch, a Model 13 ZN, was a stainless steel chronograph having a two-tone silver dial. Features included a concentric stopwatch, second and minute counter, two-button start-and-stop reset and a stainless steel case.

“This auction was wedged in between two fine art sales, which are typically bigger events, but we were thrilled with the interest in what was a wide variety of merchandise in the many diverse categories,” Cottone said. “The Longines watch, especially, came as a real pleasant surprise. We assigned it a presale estimate of $3,000-$5,000, but I guess we forgot to add another zero there.”

Cottone estimated, and he said of the nearly 450 lots that came up for bid, “98 or 99 percent changed hands. That’s a real successful sell-through, I’d say.”

Following are additional highlights from the auction. All prices quoted include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.

The second top lot of the auction was a Chelsea Wardroom clock in good running order, made by the American Ship Building Co. of Cleveland, Ohio, 12 inches tall with a 2-inch dial. It went for $15,000. Also, a mid-20th century figural bronze clock on a marble base depicting Napoleon on horseback, 38 inches tall and 22 inches wide, changed hands for $3,450.

A set of 12 Royal Doulton hand-painted and relief gold leafed plates, each one 10 1/2 inches in diameter and showing roses and vignettes, very visually striking, found a new owner for $8,050, while a German porcelain stein, made in the 19th century and depicting a wild boar with a pipe and hat, marked “Musterschutz” and standing 7 1/2 inches high, attracted a top bid of $2,875.

Lithographs, posters and broadsides all came up for bid. A Merchants Union Express Co. lithograph by Major & Knapp, Broadway, N.Y., measuring 25 inches by 19 inches, wowed the crowd for $6,500. Also, a large Calhoun print lithograph titled Peck’s Bad Boy and showing people and a dog outside Schultz Grocery, Hartford, Conn., 6 feet 10 inches by 10 feet, brought $3,738.

A U.S. Department of the Treasury currency broadside, 23 1/2 inches by 19 1/2 inches, went for $4,700, while a vintage Soviet Union poster with the (translated) message, “We stand for peace and work for the cause of peace and we’re not afraid of danger and are ready to answer a blow for a blow to the starters of war” (etc.), 27 1/4 inches by 40 1/4 inches, knocked down at $4,000.

Original oil paintings proved to be a hit with bidders. A 24-inch by 24-inch oil on canvas by Alexander Levy (American, 1881-1947), signed lower left and titled Bringing Home the Logs, fetched $6,000; and an autumnal landscape painting by another American artist, Chauncey Foster Ryder (1868-1949), an oil on paperboard measuring 12 inches by 16 inches, artist-signed, made $4,025.

An oil on canvas painting of two women by the British artist Walter Bonner Gash (1869-1928), signed lower right and dated 1909, measuring 18 inches by 24 inches, breezed to $3,450; and an oil on paperboard work by the American painter Thomas John Mitchell (New York, 1875-1940), titled Sunset and Stream, signed lower left and dated 1927 on the reverse side, rose to $2,990.

A 19th century brass telescope with a mahogany tripod by T. Cook & Sons (York and London, England), 5 feet 7 inches in length and 4 1/2 inches in diameter, finished at $4,140; and a Victor V phonograph with a fluted oak horn and the original finish, patented September 1904, brought $3,335.

Rounding out just some of the day’s top lots, a complete set of gold Indian quarter eagles, graded and raw and including the rare 1911-D example, soared to $7,130; and a set of 13 sterling silver agricultural medals from the 19th century, totaling 21.1 troy ounces of silver, gaveled for $4,198.

For details on this and upcoming Cottone auctions, phone 585-243-3100 or email them an e-mail 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 top lot of the auction was this rare and handsome men’s Longines wristwatch from the 1940s, which sold for $50,600, inclusive of the buyer’s premium. Cottone Auctions image.

Set of 12 Royal Doulton hand-painted and relief gold leafed plates, showing roses and vignettes. Price realized: $8,050. Cottone Auctions image.

Chelsea ‘Wardroom’ clock with 12-inch dial, made by the American Ship Building Co. Price realized: $15,000. Cottone Auctions image.

Oil on canvas painting by Alexander Levy (American, 1881-1947), titled ‘Bringing Home the Logs.’ Price realized: $6,000. Cottone Auctions image.

U.S. Department of the Treasury currency broadside, measuring 23 1/2 inches by 19 1/2 inches. Price realized: $4,700. Cottone Auctions image.

Vintage Soviet Union poster with patriotic message in Russian, 27 1/4 inches by 40 1/4. Price realized: $4,000. Cottone Auctions image.

Merchants Union Express Co. lithograph by Major & Knapp, Broadway, N.Y., 25 inches by 19 inches. Price realized: $6,500. Cottone Auctions image.

Last Updated on Monday, 16 June 2014 08:36
 

Sun and moon were stars of Breker technology auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Tuesday, 10 June 2014 14:11
Early sea quadrant by royal instrument-maker George Adams the elder dated 1751. Price realized: 17,700 euros ($24,250). Auction Team Breker image.

COLOGNE, Germany – Auction Team Breker of Cologne held its Spring extravaganza on May 24, a 750-lot sale that ranged from typewriters to telegraphs and automata to chronometers, all under the heading of antique toys and technology. Each area attracted its own set of specialist collectors, with the instruments of surveying and navigation garnering especial interest.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

The top lot in this section was an early sea quadrant by royal instrument-maker George Adams the elder dated 1751 (lot 118). Built for taking the altitude of the sun and the latitude at sea, the rosewood instrument had a signed boxwood scale, original box with maker’s label, retailer’s card and, most unusual of all, a telescope to align with the mica viewing window. The instrument’s rarity and fine original condition caused the bidding to sail to twice its presale estimate at 17,700 euros ($24,250).

Another early instrument that awoke interest was a brass octant by Jan Cornelius von Voer from the Frisian Island, Föhr, of circa 1760 (lot 124). The A-form frame, supporting pinhole sight and two shades, featured an unusual acanthus leaf decoration and central strut modelled as a flower girl. The instrument fetched 4,300 euros (US$ 5,900).

An unusually large tellurium by Jan Fekl of Prague (lot 167) was designed to demonstrate the orbit of the earth and moon around the sun (represented by a candle) in schools and universities of the 1890s. Measuring over 60 inches, bidding for this impressive piece rocketed to 8,600 euros ($12,000).

For land surveying were two complex late 19th century theodolites with their original lacquer, accessories and outfit cases (lots 192 and 195) by Hildebrand of Freiburg and Starke & Kammerer of Vienna that fetched 12,300 ($17,000) and 5,900 euros ($8,000) respectively.

Thomas Edison is most famous for being the first to record sound and developing the electric light bulb commercially, however he was also part of the race to patent a telephone. The result was the 1877 “Electromotograph” telephone receiver (lot 42), which contained a hand-cranked rotating chalk drum and, according to contemporary accounts, produced enough sound to fill a small hall. Playwright George Bernard Shaw wrote that Edison’s “much too ingenious invention ... bellowed your most private communications all over the house instead of whispering them with some sort of discretion.” Despite its original shortcomings, this rare machine reached 29,500 euros ($40,000) at auction.

Anything but discrete was Edison’s invention. Not so the “Discret” typewriter of 1899 (lot 94) by Friedrich Rehmann of Karlsruhe, which fetched 8,100 euros ($11,000). The elegantly designed World model (the company produced a second version for “Geheimschrift” – cipher) incorporated a type-wheel and scale for regular writing. Another popular office antique was a well-preserved example of the 1892 North’s Typewriter (lot 92) for 9,200 euros ($13,000).

The almost 300 lots of self-playing musical instruments included musical boxes from an historic privately owned collection in America. Among them was the highest-selling lot of the day, a magnificent interchangeable orchestral musical desk by Heller (lot 435) for 30,360 euros ($42,000). With a repertoire of 72 titles transcribed onto 26-inch pinned brass cylinders and a reed organ, bells, snare drum and castanets as percussion, the instrument must have represented the very finest of “entertainment systems” of its era.

Equally impressive was a rare Swiss “station” musical box attributed to Henri Vidoudez of St. Croix from circa 1890 (lot 476). Such large coin-activated musical boxes, built as attractions in public places such as hotels, restaurants and station waiting rooms, incorporated eye-catching novelties such as dancing dolls and Mandarin bell-ringers. This example boasted an additional candy-dispenser (with candy) and fetched 27,800 euros ($38,000).

A third audio-visual musical box worth mentioning is the splendid “Pièce à Oiseaux” by Ami Rivenc (lot 421) for 17,200 euros ($24,000). Perched in his glazed bower to the fore of the musical box was a miniature automaton bird that accompanied the six operatic airs with a realistic trill. From one of the largest to the smallest, a fine early 19th century musical snuff box with micro-mosaic lid (lot 467) made 17,200 Euros ($24,000).

After mechanicallyoperated music came early devices for playing recorded sound. One of the most advanced of its day was the 1927 H.M.V. Model 203 gramophone (lot 403). With its mathematically exact exponential “re-entrant” horn and luxurious gold-plated fittings, the machine represented a then state-of-the art sound reproduction. The machine, still a joy to hear today, almost ninety years later, fetched 8,000 euros ($11,000).

Related to clocks and musical boxes by way of their spring-driven mechanisms are automata. One of the most famous in the 18th century was Wolfgang von Kempelen’s “Turk” that appeared able to play a human opponent at chess. Not an automaton in the true sense, but a mechanical illusion operated by a hidden chess master, its performances were documented by a spectator in a rare pamphlet published in 1783 (lot 241) that sold at the auction for 3,400 euros ($4,700).

Automata in the auction dated mainly from the late 19th and early 20th centuries and included a menagerie of mechanical animals, musicians, magicians and smokers. Top dog in the first category was a humorous “Cochon en Promenade,” a rare entry in the catalog of Parisian firm Decamps from circa 1912 (lot 547). Depicting a gentlemanly pig-person, the elegant figure in his original checked velvet jacket waved a courteous trotter, sniffed the air and twirled his umbrella in an unmistakably French fashion for 11,400 euros ($16,000). Another animal on parade was Decamps’ “Paon Marchant” (lot 567), whose ponderous progress propelled bidding to 5,600 euros ($7.700).

From the German toy-makers came a colorful clockwork airship carousel by Müller & Kadeder of Nuremberg (lot 663) for 5,400 euros ($7,400) while a full-size dappled carousel horse by Friedrich Heyn of Neustadt (lot 291) brought 12,300 euros ($17,000) and a trio of carved organ figures (lot 289) almost 7,400 euros ($10,000). Rounding off the sale, a selection of land transportation toys included a large Packard convertible by Japanese firm Alps (lot 696) for 8,200 euros ($11,000).

Auction Team Breker’s next sales are scheduled for Sept. 20 (Photographica & Film) and Nov. 15 (Science, Technology & Toys). Enquiries: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or telephone. + 49 (0) 2236 38 43 40.

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE
Early sea quadrant by royal instrument-maker George Adams the elder dated 1751. Price realized: 17,700 euros ($24,250). Auction Team Breker image. Large tellurium by Jan Fekl of Prague, circa 1890s. Price realized: 8,600 euros ($12,000). Auction Team Breker image. Complex late 19th century theodolite with accessories and outfit case by Hildebrand of Freiburg. Price realized: 12,300 euros ($17,000). Auction Team Breker image. Well-preserved example of the 1892 North’s Typewriter. Price realized: 9,200 euros ($13,000). Auction Team Breker image. H.M.V. Model 203 gramophone, 1927. Price realized: 8,000 euros ($11,000). Auction Team Breker image. Interchangeable orchestral musical desk by Heller. Price realized: 30,360 euros ($42,000). Auction Team Breker image. Clockwork airship carousel by Müller & Kadeder of Nuremberg. Price realized: 5,400 euros ($7,400). Auction Team Breker image. Full-size dappled carousel horse by Friedrich Heyn of Neustadt. Price realized: 12,300 euros ($17,000). Auction Team Breker image.
Last Updated on Friday, 13 June 2014 15:17
 

Toy collectors grabbed ‘many brass rings’ at Bertoia’s $1.95M sale

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Written by Auction House PR   
Monday, 09 June 2014 17:26

M & K tinplate clockwork motorcycle with sidecar and woman passenger, sold for $10,620. Bertoia Auctions image

VINELAND, N.J. – There were smiles on many bidders’ faces as they departed Bertoia Auctions’ Spring Toy Break Auction on May 9th and 10th. “It was a terrific sale, and there was a great camaraderie throughout,” said Bertoia Auctions associate Rich Bertoia. “As they headed out the door with their purchases, everybody was chattering about the toys and the prices they had sold for. They were saying, ‘You have to have another sale like that.’”

It would be easier said than done to re-create a lineup rivaling Frank Loveland’s trains and trolleys; horse-drawn and bell toys from the late Harvey Funderwhite’s collection, and the numerous high-end European, automotive and early American toys from other consignors that bolstered the $1.95 million sale (all prices quoted include 18% buyer’s premium). LiveAuctioneers provided the Internet live-bidding services.

“Some of the prices were eye-opening – approaching what some would call investment level,” Bertoia said. “The gross for the sale surpassed the total high estimate by 25 percent, which is remarkable.”

The train category roared, with a circa 1904-1908 Carlisle & Finch No. 45 locomotive with tender and passenger cars set claiming top-lot status at $46,020. A boxed freight set by the same revered American manufacturer achieved $23,600. Fans of European trains joined the fray, competing with conviction over Marklin advertising boxcars, like the Heinz 57 Varieties Tomato Ketchup car, $17,700; and a beautiful 1 gauge Budweiser Beer car, $23,600. A Central Train Station was bid to $23,600; and the magical Marklin name even pushed the bidding on a small group of trackside accessories to $8,850. A Smith & White 2-inch-gauge Electric Trolley from the Loveland collection required a hefty “fare” of $7,080.

“I was not surprised about the trains’ strong performance because we had had so many phone calls prior to the sale,” said Bertoia. “The 2-inch trains were the earliest ones made in America, and in that realm, demand definitely exceeds supply. There were many ‘brass rings’ in the Loveland collection, and there were people bidding on those trains who weren’t even train collectors; they were people who like to own rare things.”

The Harvey Funderwhite horse-drawn cast-iron toy collection was the source of many superior examples entered in the sale, including a very rare Kyser & Rex Circus Wagon with articulated animals, $6,490; and a Wilkens Fire Chief Wagon, $5,605. A Gong Bell “Tramp” bell toy rolled off to a new owner for $2,142.

A very scarce early American horse-drawn tin toy attributed to Althof Bergman had a revolving action and two figures that “walked” around an American Flag. It more than doubled its high estimate to sell for $8,850.

The perennial appeal of motorcycle toys was evidenced by the M & K (Germany) tinplate ’cycle with well-dressed lady passenger in its sidecar, which sped across the auction block to a $10,620 finish. Far more diminutive, but no less charming, a 3½-inch penny toy motorcycle with a rider in a long, hooded coat commanded $2,242 against an estimate of $300-$400.

The largest parade set manufactured by Heyde, dating to around 1890-1900, was presented in its original box with three trays. In exceptional condition and missing only two pieces, the United States Army Set No. 1003 included 66 mounted horses, 29 parade figures, 42 soldiers, two caissons and cannons drawn by four horse teams. It rose to the occasion and exceeded its high estimate with a winning bid of $10,620.

Notable among the paper litho on wood toys, a German flat-bottom Noah’s Ark with River Belle ferry boat, “Horace” locomotive and several carved animals combined to achieve $4,130 – more than five times the lot’s high estimate.

American automotive toys were led by a Buddy ‘L’ pressed-steel Trencher on treads, $6,490; an Arcade cast-iron Yellow Cab panel van, $7,080; and a Seven Brothers delivery truck, $2,655. A boxed Louis Marx G-Man Pursuit Car in bright primary colors put the pedal to the metal and didn’t skid to a halt till it had reached $2,006.

A fine selection of cast-iron mechanical banks included three popular J. & E. Stevens productions: a Speaking Dog (red dress version), $4,130; a Darktown Battery, $5,310; and a Bad Accident, $7,080. A Wheel of Fortune still bank, cast iron with a japanned finish, was a fresh find that enticed bidders to a $2,655 finish.

Other auction highlights included a dated 1865 presentation fire trumpet given to the Perseverance Hose Co. No. 5, $3,245 against an estimate of $500-$700; a Bradley & Hubbard Three Kittens on Books cast-iron figural doorstop, $1,888; and a 1920 Rice’s Seeds advertising poster measuring 20 by 30 inches, $3,245.

While Bertoia’s had been keeping it a secret, somehow the word got out about the premier Max Berry collection of mechanical banks, penny toys, horse-drawn and bell toys that the company will be auctioning in November.

“We had recently started to receive phone calls from people asking if the rumors were true and congratulating us on winning the right to sell the greatest toy collection to come to the marketplace since the Donald Kaufman collection,” said Jeanne Bertoia, owner of Bertoia Auctions. “We realized it was no longer a secret and decided just to acknowledge it with pride. It’s a magnificent collection and one that collectors are sure to be talking about all summer long.”

Watch for updates on all 2014 Bertoia auction events at www.bertoiaauctions.com. To contact Bertoia Auctions, call 856-692-1881 or email This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

View the fully illustrated catalog from Bertoia's May 9-10 Spring Toy Break Auction, complete with prices realized, at www.LiveAuctioneers.com.

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

M & K tinplate clockwork motorcycle with sidecar and woman passenger, sold for $10,620. Bertoia Auctions image

Arcade cast-iron Yellow Cab panel van, sold for $7,080. Bertoia Auctions image

J. & E. Stevens ‘Bad Accident’ cast-iron mechanical bank, sold for $7,080. Bertoia Auctions image

Painted tinplate with cast-iron revolving horse clockwork toy with American Flag, sold for $8,850. Bertoia Auctions image

Kyser & Rex cast-iron horse-drawn circus cage with animal figures, sold for $6,490. Bertoia Auctions image

Bradley & Hubbard ‘Three Little Kittens’ figural cast-iron doorstop, sold for $1,888. Bertoia Auctions image

Carlisle & Finch No. 45 locomotive, tender and passenger cars, sold for $46,020. Bertoia Auctions image

Marklin Central Station in yellow, orange and green motif, sold for $23,600. Bertoia Auctions image

Railroad boxcar advertising Pabst Blue Ribbon Beer, sold for $23,600 . Bertoia Auctions image

Advertisement for Jerome B. Rice Seed Co., Cambridge, New York; sold for $3,245. Bertoia Auctions image

Last Updated on Tuesday, 10 June 2014 09:08
 

Jeweled fire screen attributed to Tiffany tops $60,000 at S & S Auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 05 June 2014 16:06

The top lot of the auction was this beautiful Moorish bronze jeweled fire screen attributed to Tiffany Studios. Price realized: $60,000. S & S Auction Inc. image.

REPAUPO, N.J. – A beautiful Moorish bronze jeweled fire screen, attributed to Tiffany Studios and featuring rope twisted brass with insert art glass and stones, sold for $60,000 at an estates sale held May 18-19 by S & S Auction Inc. The fire screen, 27 1/2 inches tall by 35 1/2 inches wide, was the top lot of the sale.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

The May 18 session consisted of 430 lots of antiques, artwork and decorative accessories. May 19 featured 460 lots of 19th and 20th century modern and design pieces. The Tiffany fire screen sold on May 18, to a Baltimore collector, who was perhaps impressed with the lot’s provenance. It was descended from a Baltimore family with ties to Hecht’s, the Baltimore department store.

Overall, the auction grossed a little more than $800,000, which pleased Glenn Sweeney of S & S Auction Inc. “We expected the Saturday session to do well because of the quality that had been consigned,” he said. “Sunday was a nice surprise and showed me that better examples of antique furniture are still in demand. We had a wide variety of pieces, in many of the styles and periods.”

About 400 people attended the event live over the course of the two days – no small feat in this Internet age. About 2,500 uncataloged lots also came up for bid.

Following are additional highlights from the May 18 session. All prices quoted include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.

A pair of lots posted identical selling prices of $15,600. The first was a monumental pair of 19th century gilt French mirrors, fashioned from carved wood and gesso and standing 97 inches tall by 53 inches wide. The second was an 18th century Dutch burl walnut tall case clock marked Gerrit Knip & Zoon of Amsterdam and in very good condition, impressive at 102 inches tall.

A Jansen French commode, ebonized with bronze boulle and gilt bronze mounts, in very good condition and an example of the finest quality, rose to $8,400; while an unsigned and unframed but visually arresting oil on board painting of a woman seated at a piano with a child, titled The Piano Lesson, 16 1/2 inches tall by 12 inches wide, went for $8,100.

A patinated and gilt bronze French figural clock, signed “A. Calmels” by the French sculptor Celestin Anatole Calmels (1822-1906), went for $6,900, and a gorgeous French gilt wood panel featuring a 12-inch Sevres porcelain plaque with a hand-painted portrait of the Duchess of Devonshire, signed “Ullman,” with 12 surrounding 3-inch Sevres porcelains, made $4,800.

Following are additional highlights from the May 19 session. All prices quoted include a 20 percent buyer’s premium.

A Danish rosewood tambour door sideboard, 31 3/4 inches tall by 78 3/4 inches wide and in good condition, commanded $4,500 despite the fact that it was missing two interior drawers. A modern queen-size Lucite canopy bed, crystal clear and in good shape save for some crazing in the Lucite, measuring 84 inches tall by 85 inches wide, topped out at $2,400.

An oval Arne Vodder Danish rosewood dining table, missing some mounting screws for the legs but still in overall very good condition, 28 1/2 inches tall by 78 inches wide, and having a pair of 19 1/2-inch-wide boards, made $2,760. A Johannes Andersen Smile teakwood coffee table, showing some wear to the finish on top but in otherwise good condition, rose to $2,160.

A set of six Hans Wegner teakwood sawbuck chairs exhibiting some light wear to the finish but in overall good shape went for $3,000. A pair of Eames for Herman Miller black leather aluminum chairs, in very good condition, hammered for $2,280. A two-piece Borg Mogensen leather parlor set, in only fair condition, with wear to the leather and finish, still made $2,400.

S&S Auction, Inc., is always accepting quality consignments for future auctions. To consign an item, an estate or a collection, call them at 856-467-3778, or e-mail them at 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 top lot of the auction was this beautiful Moorish bronze jeweled fire screen attributed to Tiffany Studios. Price realized: $60,000. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Monumental pair of 19th century gilt French mirrors made from carved wood and gesso, 97 inches tall. Price realized: $15,600. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Eighteenth century Dutch burl walnut tall case clock, marked Gerrit Knip & Zoon of Amsterdam, 102 inches tall. Price realized: $15,600. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Unsigned and unframed 19th century oil on board painting, titled ‘The Piano Lesson.’ Price realized: $8,100. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Set of six Hans Wegner teakwood sawbuck chairs in good condition, showing only light wear to the finish. Price realized: $3,000. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Arne Vodder Danish rosewood oval dining table, missing a few mounting screws but still in good shape. Price realized: $2,760. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Two-piece Borg Mogensen leather parlor set in fair condition, with wear to the leather and finish. Price realized: $2,400. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Danish rosewood sideboard, 31 3/4 inches tall by 78 3/4 inches wide. Price realized: $4,500. S & S Auction Inc. image.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 11 June 2014 16:43
 

3 lots from Belt library achieve $30,000 at PBA Galleries auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Tuesday, 03 June 2014 16:03

Illuminated manuscript of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘The Blessed Damozel’ from the calligraphic master Albert Sangorski. Price realized: $30,000. PBA Galleries image.

SAN FRANCISCO – PBA Galleries conducted an auction of fine books from the library of Dr. Elmer Belt on May 22 in their San Francisco galleries. Belt (1893-1980) was a renowned surgeon and noted bibliophile. An early member of Southern California's bibliophile society, the Zamorano Club, and the fifth recipient of the Sir Thomas More Medal for Book Collecting, Belt was a passionate book collector as evidenced by the offerings at the sale.

LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

Highlights of the sale were the three lots selling at $30,000 each: the fine illuminated manuscript of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s The Blessed Damozel from the calligraphic master Albert Sangorski; the Narrative of the Surveying Voyages of the Adventure and Beagle in three volumes, inscribed by Robert Fitzroy, captain of the Beagle, to the English philanthropist and astronomer John Lee; and the first edition of William Gilbert’s De Magnete which is one of the first major English scientific works based on experimental methods of research.

The rare complete set of California mission etchings by Henry Chapman Ford brought $27,000. The set also included the original pencil sketch for plate 9 from his series “Santa Ynez” and a second etching of the Mission Santa Barbara.

Two manuscripts were among the top sellers. A manuscript notebook of transcriptions of lectures given by Scottish anatomist and physician William Hunter, sold for an exceptional $9,000, six times the preauction high estimate. The notebook, kept by a student, documents Dr. Hunter’s famous lectures from October – December 1762. The manuscript handwritten by British philosopher Bertrand Russell sold for $8,400, almost three times the preauction high estimate. The lot, which had once belonged to Charlie Chaplin, who had presented it to Dr. Belt, decries the unequal distribution of wealth.

Additional highpoints include several photographic works including the first lot of the sale, Sierra Nevada: The John Muir Trail by Ansel Adams illustrated with 50 tipped-in plates and signed twice by Adams, $7,800; a framed photograph of Winston Churchill signed on the mount beneath the photo by the great statesman, $2,160; a collection of over 1,200 photographs of Belt family vacations, $1,920; and a framed, signed photograph of John F. Kennedy brought over four times the preauction high estimate, $1,320.

PBA Galleries holds sales of fine, rare and collectible books every two weeks. For more information regarding upcoming sales, consignments, or auction results, please contact PBA Galleries at 451-989 -266 or 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

Illuminated manuscript of Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘The Blessed Damozel’ from the calligraphic master Albert Sangorski. Price realized: $30,000. PBA Galleries image.

‘Narrative of the Surveying Voyages of the Adventure and Beagle,’ inscribed by Robert Fitzroy, captain of the Beagle, to the English philanthropist and astronomer John Lee. Price realized: $30,000. PBA Galleries image.

First edition of William Gilbert’s  ‘De Magnete.’ Price realized: $30,000. PBA Galleries image.

Last Updated on Monday, 09 June 2014 08:47
 

3-day Clars auction totals $3.2M, setting company record

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Written by Auction House PR   
Tuesday, 03 June 2014 14:30

This stunning fancy brownish pink diamond, near colorless diamond and platinum ring was the top seller at Clars May 2014 sale achieving $143,000. Clars Auction Gallery image.

OAKLAND, Calif. – Clars Auction Gallery’s Fine Art, Jewelry and Decoratives Auction held May 17-19 will go down in the firm’s history as their largest sale to date generating $3.2 million. Closing the eighth month of their fiscal year, Clars is up 59 percent over their last fiscal year, recording higher sales than any previous year. All categories outperformed expectations and buyers from around the globe drove many final sale prices to well beyond estimate. LiveAuctioneers.com provided Internet live bidding.

Fine Jewelry

The top seller of the three-day event was realized in the fine jewelry category. A rare fancy brownish pink diamond, near colorless diamonds and platinum ring was centered with one cut-cornered square modified brilliant cut (Radiant) diamond weighing 3.04 carat. Estimated to sell for $100,000 to $150,000, this exceptional work of art in jewelry sold for $143,000. Also selling impressively was a fine jadeite, sapphire, diamond and platinum ring that brought $38,500.

Asian Art

The second highest price achieved in the sale overall was realized on a Chinese hardwood huanghuali coffer. Expected to achieve a high of $25,000, fiercely competitive bidding drove the final sale price to $77,400. Coming in just behind this was a lot of four Chinese hardwood huanghuali “lamp hanger” chairs. Also more than doubling high estimate, this lot went for $71,400. Tying for third place in this category was a three-section desk, a pierced wanzi cabinet and a pair of lattice panel cabinets which all surpassed their estimates selling for $65,000 each. The highly anticipated huanghuali collection from the Gerber Estate generated over $640,000 with the Asian category in total generating just shy of $1 million on the 113 lots offered.

Fine Art

Achieving the highest outcome of the Fine Art category was Friedel Dzubas’ (American/German, 1915-1994) painting titled Dark Barrier (1983). Perhaps one of the largest pieces ever created by the artist, this work climbed past its $50,000 high estimate realizing $53,600. Another Abstract Expressionist work which also excelled was Ray Parker’s (American, 1922–1990) oil on canvas, Untitled, Brown, Blue, Orange, from 1960. With an estimate of $15,000 to $20,000, it rallied to a final price of $35,700. A classic example by LeRoy Neiman (American, 1921-2012), titled At the Racetrack, 1964, closed at $35,700 posting a nice finish from its $25,000 to $35,000 estimate.

Postwar collectors interested in original works by Sam Francis (California, 1923-1994) boosted the end results of two monotypes that realized $19,000 and $13,000. Never missing a beat of success in the global auction, Andy Warhol’s (American, 1928-1987) Geronimo from the “Cowboy and Indians” series galloped past its $15,000 to $20,000 estimate to settle at an impressive $24,000. This was followed by the illuminating result of Warhol’s print, Electric Chair, which realized $11,300.

African American Modernism prevailed yet again at Clars with a rare set of three hand-painted, polychrome porcelain enamel on steel tiles by Sargent Johnson (American, 1888 -1967) titled, Two Women, The Bulls and Dog, which achieved a price of $26,000. Johnson produced only 100 of these pieces and this was the first time this medium by the artist had ever come to the market. A bronze sculpture titled, Tribal Woman, by Elizabeth Catlett (American, 1915-2012) added to this category’s strength to realize $15,500 against its $10,000 to $15,000 estimate.

Moving to the late 19th and early 20th centuries, the largest painting ever to come to auction by Harrison Bird Brown (American, 1831-1915) titled “Picnic by the Falls (White Mountains, Maine) set a new global auction record of $23,800 for the artist and solidly surpassing its $10,000 to $15,000 estimate.

The second best performer in Fine Art was a watercolor by Frank Tenney Johnson (American, 1874-1939) titled A Mexican Smuggler (1914). Measuring 33 inches in height, it was the largest work on paper ever to come to the market by the artist, realizing an impressive outcome of $47,600. Adding to the stellar results of watercolors, two beautiful works by Percy Gray, Chief Gall and Carmel Valley” realized $17,500 and $11,900.

Southwest artist, Howard Schleeter’s (1903-19776) painting, Taos Valley, New Mexico (1937), quickly jumped past its $12,000 to $16,000 to finish at $20,500 because of several aggressive bidders. An oil on canvas by Alaskan artist, Sydney Mortimer Laurence (1865-1940) titled Mount McKinley, Alaska, Height 20300 Ft topped out at $29,800.

Decorative Arts and Furnishings

A gorgeous white 1954 Chevrolet Corvette Roadster in original condition sped off for at $65,500, the top item in Clars’ Decorative Arts and Furnishings category. Racing behind were two 2008 Ron Simms custom motorcycles which sold for $12,000 and $13,000 and a 2001 Harley-Davidson Heritage Softail Classic rumbled off for $7,000.

Befitting for a northern California-based auction house, just a stone’s throw from the famous “Gold Country,” a California gold nugget weighing 10.9 total ounces sold for just over $20,000 and a second weighing in a 9.9 total ounces brought $12,000.

In the decorative arts offered, highlights included an antique Continental woven tapestry panel, which sold nicely for $19,000. In the impressive sterling offerings, a large collection of Georg Jensen went for over $40,000 and a Tiffany water pitcher sold for $17,800 followed by a Chinese Export silver tea service by Woshing, Shanghai, which brought $9,500.

The top seller in the furniture offerings was a late 19th century Louix XV-style ormolu mounted kingwood and satine parquetry decorated table, which sold very well for $16,600. Turning one century ahead, a Danish Has Wegner Papa Bear Chair brought $7,800.

Rounding out this category was a fine ethnographic collection that included an Idoma, Nigeria carved wood figural sculpture that sold for $3,500.

For more information email: This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or call 510-480-0100.

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


ADDITIONAL LOTS OF NOTE

This stunning fancy brownish pink diamond, near colorless diamond and platinum ring was the top seller at Clars May 2014 sale achieving $143,000. Clars Auction Gallery image.

The second highest price achieved in the sale overall was realized on a Chinese hardwood huanghuali coffer.  Expected to achieve a high of $25,000, the fiercely competitive bidding drove the final sale price to $77,400. Clars Auction Gallery image.

Achieving the highest outcome of the fine art sale was this monumental work by Friedel Dzubas’ (American/German, 1915-1994) titled, ‘Dark Barrier’ (1983). This work soared past its $50,000 high estimate realizing $53,600. Clars Auction Gallery image.

This Abstract Expressionist work by Ray Parker (American, 1922-1990) titled ‘Untitled, Brown, Blue, Orange,’ from 1960. With an estimate of $15,000 to $20,000, it rallied to a final price of $35,700. Clars Auction Gallery image.

Andy Warhol’s ‘Geronimo’ (from the ‘Cowboy and Indians’ series)” galloped past its $15,000 to $20,000 estimate to settle at $24,000. Clars Auction Gallery image.

The largest painting ever to come to auction by Harrison Bird Brown (American, 1831-1915) also set a record for the artist. Titled, ‘Picnic by the Falls (White Mountains, Maine),’ this work achieved $23,800. Clars Auction Gallery image.

The second best performer of the sale was this watercolor by Frank Tenney Johnson (American, 1874-1939) titled ‘A Mexican Smuggler’ (1914). The exceptionally large work made $47,600. Clars Auction Gallery image.

This gorgeous1954 Chevrolet Corvette in original condition sped off, against heated bidding, for a smooth $65,500. Clars Auction Gallery image.

This antique Continental woven tapestry panel sold nicely for $19,000. Clars Auction Gallery image.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 June 2014 15:07
 
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