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Auction Houses in the News

Famous Manet portrait headed to Christie’s auction

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Written by ULA ILNYTZKY, Associated Press   
Monday, 29 September 2014 09:14
Edouard Manet, 'Spring,' 1882. Image courtesy of Wikiart. NEW YORK (AP) – A celebrated portrait by Edouard Manet of a Parisian actress in a fancy dress and bonnet is heading to auction and could set a record for the artist.

The French impressionist artist's widely acclaimed painting Spring, presented at the Paris Salon of 1882, is estimated to bring up to $35 million on Nov. 5 at Christie's. It has been in the same American collection for over a century and on loan at the National Gallery of Art for the last two decades.

Often called “the first artist of the modern era,” Manet painted actress Jeanne Demarsy in 1881 as an allegory of spring exquisitely attired in a floral dress and bonnet and holding a lacy parasol against a background of rhododendrons.

Spring was widely acclaimed during the lifetime of Manet, one of the leading artists of the impressionist movement famous for his portraits and scenes from everyday life.

“The appearance of a Manet of this importance to the market is extremely rare and very exciting to collectors from every part of the globe,” said Brooke Lampley, senior vice president of Christie's impressionist and modern art.

The portrait has a presale estimate of $25 million to $35 million. The current Manet auction record is $33.2 million, achieved in 2010 for his Self Portrait With a Palette.

“It's significant because it is a very charming and beautiful work by Manet. It's very much a 19th-century theme,'' said David Nash of the Madison Avenue and Chelsea art gallery Mitchell-Innes & Nash. “Manet is famous for being the painter of modern life in Paris.”

Manet had intended to depict four allegorical works of the four seasons but only completed Spring and Autumn. He died in 1883 at 51.

The first owner of the work was Manet's friend, the journalist Antonin Proust. It later was in the collections of the operatic baritone and important impressionist collector J.B Faure and French art dealer Paul Durand-Ruel, who sold it to a private collector in 1909 where it remained.

Christie's is exhibiting the painting in Hong Kong, London and Paris before the sale.

“We expect the diverse interest in this work to herald the continued interest in impressionism,” Lampley said.

Proceeds will benefit a private American foundation that supports environmental, public health and other causes.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-26-14 1655GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Edouard Manet, 'Spring,' 1882. Image courtesy of Wikiart.
Last Updated on Monday, 29 September 2014 09:23
 

Nuremberg stenographer's mementos to be auctioned

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Written by RACHEL D'ORO, Associated Press   
Friday, 26 September 2014 08:52
Rare color photo of the trial at Nuremberg showing the defendants guarded by American Military Police. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – The old trunk was locked when it was found by auction house workers clearing a long-vacant home that was about to be listed for sale.

The collection crew's members couldn't find the key, so they broke the lock. Inside were yellowed papers and blankets. Personal stuff, they figured.

Only back at the warehouse of Anchorage-based Alaska Auction Co. did they discover carbon copies of transcripts from the Nuremberg war-crimes trials. They also found a staff directory for the multinational tribunal that prosecuted scores of Nazi masterminds in those infamous trials, a translated letter to Nazi faithful that signs off with “Heil Hitler” and personal credentials and correspondence belonging to a lowly postwar stenographer who squirreled the mementos away for decades.

The late Maxine C. Carr's small collection is the featured lot in an auction of World War II relics scheduled to take place on Saturday.

“It was chilling, very chilling going through that paperwork. Very unsettling,” said Christine Hill, who has owned the auction house with her husband, Duane, for 30 years.

The Carr collection is being auctioned as one lot, with no minimum bidding set. Several other private collections of mementos from that era also are being auctioned and include Nazi armbands, German and Russian medals, and a tiny Hitler propaganda booklet. There also are plenty of Alaska artifacts, such as ivory carvings, old photographs, even black bear and coyote head mounts.

Little is known about Carr's time in Alaska, although a state fishing license was issued to her in 1951, when she was 29 years old. While in Alaska, she eventually used her married name, Maxine Sud, according state records. Carr died at least a decade ago, but it's not clear exactly when she passed away.

Her 91-year-old widower, Chand Sud, lives in an Anchorage assisted living facility. Through the auction house, he declined to comment to The Associated Press.

Hill said the widower was surprised to learn about the documents, although he knew of her Nuremberg past.

An old undated news article found among his wife's possessions says Maxine Carr worked for 32 months on the International Military Tribunal staff in Nuremberg.

In November 1945, the landmark Nuremberg trials began. Twelve of the 23 defendants, including Hitler aide Hermann Goering, were sentenced to death.

Almost seven decades after the war, many institutions, including the Harvard Law School Library, have extensive collections of Nuremberg trial documentation, said Ed Moloy, curator of modern manuscripts at the Harvard library. While the Carr collection is interesting, it's likely not particularly unique, he said.

But it might appeal to a private collector who wants such documents that are not already housed in a repository such as the Harvard library, which has 600 linear feet of Nuremberg documents.

“It's very possible that people like Miss Carr, who was part of this pool of civilians working to support the trials, ended up with extra copies or something and saved them for souvenirs,” Moloy said. “That's what I would assume this collection is.”

Last year, other Nuremberg documents surfaced in Israel at a flea market in Tel Aviv. That 500-page trove eventually ended up at auction, too, where they sold for a price tag in the $10,000 range.

___

Follow Rachel D'Oro at https://twitter.com/rdoro

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-25-14 1245GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Rare color photo of the trial at Nuremberg showing the defendants guarded by American Military Police. Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
Last Updated on Friday, 26 September 2014 09:18
 

Warhol paintings of Elvis, Brando headed to NYC auction

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Written by ULA ILNYTZKY, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 24 September 2014 12:25

Andy Warhol (1928-1987), 'Four Marlons,' silkscreen ink on unprimed linen, 81 x 65 inches (205.7 x 165.1 cm), executed in 1966. Image courtesy of Christie's.

NEW YORK (AP) – Elvis Presley. Marlon Brando. Andy Warhol. The A-list trifecta of music, film and art is going on the auction block at Christie's in November.

Triple Elvis (Ferus Type) and Four Marlons rate among Warhol's most famous portraits. The monumental paintings, each nearly 7 feet high, have never appeared at auction before and could bring a combined total of $130 million when they go up for bid on Nov. 12.

Christie's said they are being sold separately, and estimates for each were not yet available.

The Elvis, executed in ink and silver paint in 1963, depicts the rock ’n’ roll heartthrob as a cowboy, armed and shooting from the hip. The Brando silkscreen, created three years later, shows the Hollywood actor on a motorcycle and black leather jacket, an image that's repeated four times.

Both are being sold by German casino company WestSpiel, which acquired them in the late 1970s for one of its casinos.

“Given the current strength of the market, especially for works by Andy Warhol, it is now the right moment to part from these works,” WestSpiel director Lothar Dunkel said in a statement.

Warhol produced a series of 22 images of Elvis. His Double Elvis (Ferus Type) sold for $37 million at Sotheby's in 2012.

The appetite for Warhol works appears unstoppable. Last year, his Silver Car Crash (Double Disaster) sold at Sotheby's for $105.4 million, an auction record for the artist.

Brett Gorvy, Christie's international head of post-war and contemporary art, said Warhol loved repetition and used it “both as a way of creating a narrative ... and a way of really commenting on society.”

The repetition in Triple Elvis, also had a cinematic feel, said Gorvy, adding, “You have that sense of cinematic motion of ultimately the gun shooting while it's a static image.”

Gorvy called the Brando extremely rare, with only one other quadruple Brando in the Louisiana Museum of Modern Art in Copenhagen.

A Double Marlon sold at Christie's for $32.5 million in 2008.

“What's fantastic about this is it's painted on raw linen. So where the silver Elvis is painted on a sprayed surface, here the silk screen is literally impregnated into the raw linen,” said Gorvy. “It's the only time that Warhol really tried this.”

____

Associated Press video journalist Bonny Ghosh in New York contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-23-14 1545GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGES OF NOTE

Andy Warhol (1928-1987), 'Four Marlons,' silkscreen ink on unprimed linen, 81 x 65 inches (205.7 x 165.1 cm), executed in 1966. Image courtesy of Christie's. 

 Andy Warhol (1928-1987), 'Triple Elvis [Ferus Type],' silkscreen ink and silver paint on linen, 82 x 69 inches (208.73 x 175.3 cm), executed in 1963. Image courtesy of Christie's.

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 24 September 2014 15:37
 

Paintings by Indian artists excel at Bonhams, Christie's

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Written by AFP wire service   
Thursday, 18 September 2014 11:54

Vasudeo Santu Gaitonde, 'Untitled,' 1963, which sold for $1.68 million. image courtesy of Bonhams.

NEW YORK (AFP) – Paintings by one of India's most important modern artists went under the hammer in New York on Wednesday, selling for more than expected at over $3.7 million, auction houses said.

Three untitled oils on canvas by pioneering Indian abstract artist Vasudeo Santu Gaitonde, who in 1964 based himself in New York, were by Christie's and Bonhams.

The Bonhams canvases, signed and dated 1961 and 1963, came from the artist's "non-objective" series, and fetched $1.08 million and $1.68 million respectively, Bonhams told AFP.

Both sold for significantly more than their preauction upper estimates, and in the case of the 1961 canvas more than double.

The auction house did not identify the buyers further than describing them as international.

Christie's sold a 1971 "Untitled" in moss green for $965,000, which it said showcases the "painter, philosopher and alchemist at the zenith of his career."

The auction house said it was bought by an Asian private buyer.

Experts say Gaitonde, who has been compared to Mark Rothko at his best, is poised to join the international modern art canon, in the robust, emerging market in modern Indian art.

The Guggenheim in New York on Oct. 24 opens the first museum exhibition dedicated to the famously reclusive artist, and Gaitonde work has recently set records in the Asian art world.

In 2012 Christie's set a world record for a modern Indian painting by selling a canvas for $3.79 million. In March, Sotheby's sold another Gaitonde for $2.5 million.

Born in Nagpur, India in 1924, Gaitonde was inspired early on by Swiss artist Paul Klee, then turned toward abstraction and cultivated a lifelong interest in Zen Buddhism.

He studied in Bombay and in 1964 lived at New York's Chelsea Hotel, then a cultural hub that housed Bob Dylan, Arthur Miller and Leonard Cohen.

The last decade has seen an astonishing explosion in the global market for Asian art, fueled by new wealth in the region, particularly in China.



ADDITIONAL IMAGES OF NOTE

Vasudeo Santu Gaitonde, 'Untitled,' 1963, which sold for $1.68 million. image courtesy of Bonhams. 

The top lot at Christie's auction was by Francis Newton Souza (1924-2002), 'The Butcher,' oil on satin, painted in 1962. Price Realized: $1,685,000. Image courtesy of Christie's 

Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 12:20
 

Gold-plated model of Bond’s Aston Martin DB5 hits £55,000

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 18 September 2014 10:24
Winning bidder Robert Tyrrell with the model Aston Martin DB5 which he bought for £55,000 at an auction to benefit the NSPCC. Christie's image. LONDON – On Wednesday, the 50th anniversary of the world premiere of the movie Goldfinger, a 24K gold-plated third-scale replica of James Bond’s iconic Aston Martin DB5 sold at Christie’s for £55,000 ($89,608).

The special online auction was held to benefit the NSPCC (National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children) by Christie’s and EON Productions. The unique model was among the highlights of the five lots that made a total of £136,800 for the charity.

The model was created by Propshop at Pinewood Studios and signed by legendary Bond Production Designer Sir Ken Adam. Bidding closed online Wednesday evening during an event in London’s West End attended by Bond girl Shirley Eaton. Complete with radio controlled machine guns, bulletproof shield and revolving number plate, interest in the sale came from Bond fans around the world with more than 19,000 visitors from 129 countries to the special www.christies.com/goldfinger site.

The buyer, Robert Tyrrell from Steventon, near Abingdon in Oxfordshire, a farmer with a collection of classic cars, said after his winning bid: “I saw it at Goodwood this weekend and said ‘I’ll be having that.’ I am a Bond man, the first movie I saw was Thunderball and I was more than happy to support this worthy cause.”

A unique Goldfinger Seamaster ‘Aqua Terra’ wristwatch created by Omega to celebrate the anniversary of the film surpassed the presale estimate 10 times when it sold for £70,000. Other items included in the benefit auction were a first edition of Goldfinger by Ian Fleming which made £2,800 and an original British cinema poster with the famous golden girl design which sold for £3,500. The auction coincides with the release of the Goldfinger Limited Edition gold SteelBookTM Blu-ray on Sept. 22 from MGM and Twentieth Century Fox Home Entertainment.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Winning bidder Robert Tyrrell with the model Aston Martin DB5 which he bought for £55,000 at an auction to benefit the NSPCC. Christie's image.
Last Updated on Thursday, 18 September 2014 10:41
 

Easy Rider movie motorcycle to star in entertainment auction

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Written by Auction House PR   
Wednesday, 17 September 2014 16:09

The customized Captain America chopper Peter Fonda rode in 'Easy Rider.' Profiles in History image. LOS ANGELES – The most famous motorcycle in the world, Peter Fonda’s famed Captain America chopper from the 1969 classic, Easy Rider, will be featured in Profiles in History’s Hollywood Auction from Oct. 17-20.

It is the only original and authentic motorcycle to exist from the classic movie and substantiated by three signed letters of authenticity: one from the National Motorcycle Museum (Anamosa, Iowa) signed by the museum’s director, a letter from Peter Fonda, and a signed letter of authenticity from Dan Haggerty attesting to all the facts in the Peter Fonda letter as being true and accurate. The estimate is $1 million-$1.2 million.

“Captain America's stretched-out American-flag-adorned panhead chopper is one of the most iconic images in American film,” noted Joseph M. Maddalena, president and chief operating officer, Profiles in History. “The bike evokes powerful emotions even in nonbikers. It personifies the ’60s, all of the good and the bad that decade brought. This is an opportunity for someone to own a pure piece of nostalgic entertainment history.”

The iconic red, white and blue stars and stripes panhead chopper, with chromed hard tail frame, was designed and built by two African-American chopper builders – Cliff Vaughs and Ben Hardy – following design cues provided by Peter Fonda himself. There were two Captain America bikes built and ridden by Fonda for the making of Easy Rider to ensure shooting would continue should mechanical issues arise. In addition to this bike being ridden in the film, this one was used in the climactic crash sequence at the end of the film.

Following production, Fonda gave the motorcycle to fellow actor, Dan Haggerty, who helped maintain the motorcycles during the filming of Easy Rider. The whereabouts of the other Captain America bike is unknown. Prior to the film’s release, that Captain America motorcycle was stolen and presumed broken down and sold for its parts.

The crash bike was fully restored by Dan Haggerty and displayed for 12 years at the National Motorcycle Museum of Anamosa. Not only does Fonda’s Easy Rider Captain America remain as the single most famous motorcycle ever created, its very image symbolizes the counter-culture movement the film inspired.

A portion of the proceeds will be donated to benefit the American Humane Association, a nonprofit organization dedicated to the welfare of animals and children.

For details, phone Profiles in History at 310-859-7701.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
The customized Captain America chopper Peter Fonda rode in 'Easy Rider.' Profiles in History image.
Last Updated on Thursday, 25 September 2014 08:35
 

Heritage Auctions nets trophy catch: fossil of swordfish

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Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 17 September 2014 10:15
The Cretaceous era fossil, known as Protosphyraena nitida, measures about 8 feet from sword to tail fin. Heritage Auctions image. DALLAS (AP) – The skeletal rendition of an 85 million-year-old swordfish is set to be sold later this month by a Dallas-based auction house.

The Cretaceous era fossil, known as Protosphyraena nitida, measures about 8 feet from sword to tail fin and contains 59 teeth.

The fossil is notable in that it had teeth where modern swordfish do not.

Craig Kissick, associate director of nature and science at Heritage Auctions, says the skeleton is 75 percent original bone, with the remaining 25 percent a restoration of areas that were not preserved.

The fossil was found entombed in rock in Kansas' Smoky Hill Chalk of the Niobrara Formation in the late 1880s.

The skeletal rendering will be auctioned off on Sept. 28.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-16-14 0802GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
The Cretaceous era fossil, known as Protosphyraena nitida, measures about 8 feet from sword to tail fin. Heritage Auctions image.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 17 September 2014 10:25
 

Irma Stern paintings expected to fetch $3.7M at auction

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Written by AFP wire service   
Tuesday, 16 September 2014 12:14

Lot 44 - Irma Stern, 'Still life with African Woman in Zanzibar. Bonhams image.

JOHANNESBURG (AFP) – A collection of prized paintings by one of South Africa's foremost and prolific artists, Irma Stern, will go under the hammer at Bonhams in London, the British auction house announced Tuesday.

Bonhams London will on Oct. 1 auction 11 paintings with a combined estimated value of £2.3 ($3.7) million during its biannual South African sale.

The collection, dated between 1925 and 1957, "provides a succinct cross section of her career," said Hannah O'Leary, head of South African Art at Bonhams.

It includes "exotic portraits, sumptuous still lifes and vibrant landscapes painted in Zanzibar, Italy and ... South Africa."

Born to German-Jewish parents in the Transvaal in 1894, the award-winning Stern died in Cape Town in 1966.

She is ranked among South Africa's top-selling artists of all time.



ADDITIONAL IMAGES OF NOTE

Lot 44 - Irma Stern, 'Still life with African Woman in Zanzibar. Bonhams image. 

Lot 45 - Irma Stern, 'Zanzibar Garden.'  Bonhams image.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 16 September 2014 12:33
 

Sotheby’s to auction Rothko paintings from Mellon estate

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Written by Associated Press   
Monday, 15 September 2014 16:22
Paul Mellon and Rachel Lambert Mellon. Image provided by Sotheby's NEW YORK (AP) – Two Mark Rothko paintings are among the objects that will be auctioned in the fall from the estate of Rachel “Bunny” Mellon, a noted horticulturist, philanthropist and heir to the Listerine fortune, Sotheby's announced Friday.

The works, which have been in the Mellon collection for more than 40 years, will be offered on Nov. 10. Untitled (Yellow, Orange, Yellow, Light Orange), painted in 1955, could bring up to $30 million; Untitled from 1970 is estimated to sell for up to $20 million.

The auction house on Friday detailed some of the 2,000 items, including jewelry and furniture, that will be sold in a series of auctions that could realize a total of more than $100 million.

Among the jewelry is a Fancy Vivid Blue pear-shape diamond estimated to bring $10 million to $15 million on Nov. 20. Furniture and other home interior items will be sold Nov. 21-23.

Proceeds will benefit the Gerard B. Lambert Foundation, which supports the Oak Spring Garden Library in Virginia. The library houses Mellon's collection of rare books, manuscripts and works of art related to landscape design, horticulture and natural history.

Mellon, who died in March at 103, was the widow of philanthropist Paul Mellon. The objects come from the couple's homes in the United States and abroad. Their 2,000-acre Virginia farm went on the market last month for $70 million.

Her grandfather Jordan W. Lambert created Listerine, and her father, Gerald Lambert, built a company that made everything from Dentyne to Schick razors. Paul Mellon had his own fortune, inherited from his Pittsburgh industrialist father and built on holdings in banking, coal, railroads, steel and aluminum.

Bunny Mellon was a self-taught botanist and close friend of Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. In 1961, she redesigned the White House Rose Garden and later created another White House garden that was named for Kennedy after her death.

A private person, Mellon was thrust in the spotlight when former Democratic vice presidential candidate John Edwards was indicted in 2011 for using what prosecutors alleged was campaign money, including $750,000 from Mellon, to hide his mistress during his 2008 presidential bid. He was later acquitted. Mellon was never accused of breaking any laws.

During their lifetimes, the Mellons donated hundreds of important artworks to museums, including the National Gallery of Arts. The Washington, D.C., museum was founded in 1937 by Paul Mellon's father, Andrew Mellon.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-12-14 2202GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Paul Mellon and Rachel Lambert Mellon. Image provided by Sotheby's
Last Updated on Monday, 15 September 2014 16:37
 

Saco River Auction scouts early baseball card collection

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Written by DAVID SHARP, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 03 September 2014 09:01

Walter Johnson on a 1909–1911 American Tobacco Company baseball card (White Borders, T206). Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.

BIDDEFORD, Maine (AP) – A baseball fan took up smoking a century ago and with it acquired another habit: holding onto little cards that bore the faces of baseball's earliest greats.

Now, the trove of more than 1,400 tobacco cards featuring a slew of Hall of Famers like Cy Young and Ty Cobb – the legacy of a teenage smoker whose family hung onto a collection that dates to 1909 – is going up for auction.

The cards will be sold by an auction house that is becoming known for selling rare memorabilia, Saco River Auction Co. in Maine.

Troy Thibodeau, the company's manager and auctioneer, said the collection of cards dating from 1909 to 1911 – an era when the Yankees were known as the Highlanders, the Dodgers were the Superbas and the Braves were the Doves – belongs to the grandchildren of a Brooklyn, New York-born man who began smoking when he was 19.

“Every time he got a card, he threw it in a box,” Thibodeau said.

The collection has been dubbed the “Portland trove” because some of the collector's descendants ended up in Maine's largest city. The family doesn't want to be identified, Thibodeau said.

Due to be auctioned individually and in small lots starting in January, the collection includes about 10 cards depicting Young and a dozen depicting Cobb, along with other Hall of Famers like Chief Bender, Christy Mathewson and Walter Johnson.

Smaller than modern baseball cards, these cards known as “T206” cards to collectors feature color lithographs on the front and a tobacco advertisement on the back.

“They're not like your normal baseball card where there's a stock piece of photography that's printed on millions and millions of cards. These are truly pieces of art. They're colorful, they're bright, they're folky, they're Americana,” Thibodeau said.

The collector preferred a cigarette brand from Havana called El Principe De Gales. But there are cards featuring logos from other cigarette brands of the era like American Beauty, Sweet Caporal, Sovereign and Piedmont.

Such a large collection is unusual but not unprecedented. Large collections come up for sale every year or two, collectors say. Part of what makes this one special is that the cards are in great shape.

Scott Hileman from New Jersey-based SportsCard Guaranty, who graded the cards, said they're all among the type of cards used to market brands that were part of American Tobacco Co. for three years, from 1909 to 1911. He described the trove as “incredible.”

Missing are two of the rarest cards: Those depicting pitcher Eddie Plank and shortstop Honus Wagner. The priciest baseball card ever sold was a 1909 Honus Wagner, which went for $2.8 million.

Nonetheless, the collection is valuable with the potential for some of the single cards to reach into five figures, Thibodeau said.

Saco River is making a name for itself despite being a small auction house.

Last year, a collector from Massachusetts paid $92,000 for an 1865 baseball card depicting the Brooklyn Atlantics amateur baseball club. In 2012, the auction house sold a rare 1888 card of Hall of Famer Michael “King” Kelly for $72,000.

“If you love baseball, this is the beginning of it. This is where stars were made and heroes were born. It's history,” Thibodeau said.

___

Online:

http://www.sacoriverauction.com

___

Follow David Sharp on Twitter at https://twitter.com/David_Sharp_AP

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-09-01-14 1448GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

Walter Johnson on a 1909–1911 American Tobacco Company baseball card (White Borders, T206). Image courtesy of Wikimedia Commons. 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 03 September 2014 09:19
 

Lou Gehrig’s 1928 world champions watch sells for $340,000

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Written by Auction House PR   
Wednesday, 27 August 2014 10:34
The engraving on the back of the watch declares the New York Yankees champions of the 1928 World Series. Lou Gehrig hit four home runs and batted .545 in the four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals in the Series. SCP Auctions image. LAGUNA NIGUEL, Calif. – Lou Gehrig’s 1928 New York Yankees world champions wristwatch sold for $340,000 on Monday, the day after SCP Auctions’ Mid-Summer Classic auction came to a close.

“Lou Gehrig’s 1928 World Series watch is one of the most significant items ever offered at auction representing baseball’s beloved Iron Horse,” said Dan Imler, vice president of SCP Auctions. “We are thrilled to see this treasure sell to an advanced collector for a price worthy of its quality and historical importance.”

The $340,000 price marks one of the highest prices ever paid for a Gehrig item. In November 2011, SCP Auctions sold a game-used bat swung by Gehrig in 1939 to hit his final home run with the New York Yankees during a spring training game for $403,664.

What’s more, both the consignor of the watch and SCP Auctions have agreed to make donations to their local ALS Association chapters. “With this summer marking the 75th anniversary of Gehrig’s ‘Luckiest Man Alive’ speech, it seems only fitting,” added Imler.

The buyer of the watch wishes to remain anonymous at this time.



ADDITIONAL IMAGES OF NOTE
The engraving on the back of the watch declares the New York Yankees champions of the 1928 World Series. Lou Gehrig hit four home runs and batted .545 in the four-game sweep of the St. Louis Cardinals in the Series. SCP Auctions image. Lou Gehrig's name is engraved on the side of the watch, which sold for $340,000 on Sunday. SCP Auctions image.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 27 August 2014 10:56
 

Christie’s Shanghai sets up shop in landmark building

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 21 August 2014 09:00

Christie’s Shanghai is housed at the Ampire Building, built in 1907. Christie's image.

SHANGHAI – One year after its groundbreaking inaugural sale in mainland China, Christie’s announces the opening of a new home and a multipurpose art space in Shanghai’s historical Bund.

Located in the heart of the Bund, the symbol of the city, Christie’s Shanghai is housed at the Ampire Building, which was built in 1907 and has been part of the urban landscape over the past century.

Christie’s says the combination of heritage and style is a perfect match for the company. Covering an area of nearly 1,000 square meters for exhibition galleries and offices, Christie’s Shanghai will serve as a convening place for collectors and art lovers by holding exhibitions, lectures, events, private sales.

To mark the occasion, Christie’s will present its Shanghai autumn auctions on Oct. 24 featuring an evening sale of Asian and Western 20th century and contemporary art, a prestigious lifestyle sale, and the launch of a new category of Chinese contemporary design. A private selling exhibition, “The Art of The Horse,” will be the opening exhibition at Christie's Shanghai on Oct. 21 and tours to Hong Kong in November.

“As we continue to expand in China, Christie’s new art space will allow us to accommodate the many activities that we have planned for China,” said Jinqing Cai, president of Christie’s China. “Our mission is to become an integral part of the art community in China while promoting great works of art by Chinese artists and creative talents globally. The launch of our Chinese Contemporary Design category, for example, is also part of our plan to offer exciting initiatives to art lovers in China and worldwide. After being exhibited at Christie’s Paris, Hong Kong and New York, the collection will be offered at Christie’s Shanghai autumn auction.”



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

Christie’s Shanghai is housed at the Ampire Building, built in 1907. Christie's image. 

Last Updated on Thursday, 21 August 2014 09:08
 

Bonhams auctions '62 Ferrari 250 GTO for record $38.1M

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Written by Associated Press   
Friday, 15 August 2014 13:50
1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta. Bonhams image.

CARMEL, Calif. (AP) – A rare 1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta once owned by a famed racing driver and Olympic gold medalist has sold for $38.1 million at Bonhams' Quail Lodge Auction.

Thursday's sale at an auction in California during Monterey Car Week is believed to be a record public auction price for a classic car, topping the nearly $30 million paid for a Mercedes W196 last year in England.

The Los Angeles Times reports the $38.1 million total price – including 10 percent buyer fee – is half of what experts said it could fetch. One example reportedly sold for $52 million in a private transaction.

The car is one of just 39 Ferrari GTOs produced and was once owned by racer and retired Olympic gold medal skier Henri Oreiller, who died after crashing it into a building. The car was rebuilt by the Ferrari factory.

___

Information from: Los Angeles Times, http://www.latimes.com

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
1962 Ferrari 250 GTO Berlinetta. Bonhams image.
Last Updated on Friday, 15 August 2014 14:02
 

Bertoia’s to auction Max Berry lifetime collection of antique toys & banks

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Written by Auction House PR   
Thursday, 14 August 2014 13:35
One of the rarest pieces in the Max N. Berry collection is a circa-1876 “Preacher at the Pulpit” mechanical bank made by the J. & E. Stevens Company of Cromwell, Connecticut. Coming to the auction marketplace with a long and distinguished line of provenance, it will be offered at auction with a $150,000-$175,000 estimate. Bertoia Auctions image. VINELAND, N.J. – Jeanne Bertoia, owner of Bertoia Auctions in Vineland, New Jersey, announced today that her company has been chosen to auction the antique toy and bank collection of distinguished Washington attorney and longtime collector/scholar Max Berry. The first in a series of two, possibly three, auctions devoted to the Berry collection will be held at Bertoia’s gallery on November 14 and 15, 2014. Over 500 antique banks, cast-iron horse-drawn toys, early American tin and cast-iron bell toys will cross the auction block, with Internet live bidding through LiveAuctioneers.

“We are thrilled that Max chose us to auction his toys. It’s such an honor for us,” said Bertoia. “Our family has been friends with Max for many years, going back to the great friendship he had with my husband, Bill [the late William S. Bertoia, co-founder of Bertoia Auctions].”

The Max Berry collection is regarded as one of the most important antique toy and bank collections in existence.

“Few collections are on par with Max’s,” Bertoia said. “In terms of rarity and historical significance, it ranks among the very best collections of the past 30 to 40 years.”

Although the lineup of toys for November’s debut sessions is still being finalized, Bertoia singled out two exciting early American rarities that definitely will be included: a circa-1875 J. & E. Stevens “Preacher at the Pulpit” mechanical bank and the only known example of an 1893 Ives cast-iron “Cutter Sleigh” with original figure.

Among the mechanical banks to be auctioned are several that collectors “might only have the chance to bid on once or twice in a lifetime,” Bertoia said.

To satisfy collectors’ curiosity until the printed catalog is available in October, Bertoia’s will be uploading images of Berry’s toys and banks to their website (www.bertoiaauctions.com) on an ongoing basis.

“We would recommend that collectors check back regularly to see what else has been added to the website, but they shouldn’t delay in ordering their catalogs once they become available,” Bertoia said. “Catalogs documenting Max Berry’s collection will be a must-have for every collector’s reference library. They could easily sell out.”

A Washington resident, Max N. Berry has practiced international trade law since 1967. He represents industries and countries throughout Europe, as well as U.S. corporations and trade associations that export various products abroad. In addition, he has been active in national and local politics, and has served on the Business and Finance Council of the National Democratic Party. He has also been significantly involved with nonprofit organizations in Washington and throughout the United States. A long-time patron of the arts, Berry has participated on the boards of many cultural organizations and recently served as the Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Smithsonian Institution. He is also on the Board of Trustees of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and has served as trustee to many other prestigious fine art institutions.

Over the years, Berry has also been an actively involved member of both the Antique Toy Collectors of America and Mechanical Bank Collectors of America, for which he has served as pro bono legal adviser.

“Max is highly respected and very well liked by his fellow collectors – he’s a superstar of the hobby. Many consider him a mentor and turn to him for advice and guidance. He’s also a fantastic storyteller who remembers every detail behind every toy purchase he ever made. When he talks about his collecting adventures, he draws you in and you feel like you were actually there, right alongside him, as he was buying this toy or that bank. We’re expecting a packed house at the preview, where collectors will be able to discuss the toys personally with Max before they are auctioned,” Bertoia said.

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 . Visit the company’s website at www.bertoiaauctions.com .

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ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
One of the rarest pieces in the Max N. Berry collection is a circa-1876 “Preacher at the Pulpit” mechanical bank made by the J. & E. Stevens Company of Cromwell, Connecticut. Coming to the auction marketplace with a long and distinguished line of provenance, it will be offered at auction with a $150,000-$175,000 estimate. Bertoia Auctions image.
Last Updated on Thursday, 14 August 2014 14:34
 

New report examines link between auctions and elephant poaching

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Written by Outside Media Source   
Tuesday, 12 August 2014 11:19
Image courtesy of IFAW WASHINGTON – The International Fund for Animal Welfare (IFAW www.ifaw.org ) today – World Elephant Day – published a new investigative report finding that the auction industry does not have the safeguards in place to protect elephants. "Although many in the industry claim not to be part of the problem driving the elephant poaching crisis, investigators found almost no data that would support this assertion," the report said.

Titled "Bidding Against Survival: The Elephant Poaching Crisis and the Role of Auctions in the U.S. Ivory Market," the report shows that only 1 of the 351 auctions investigated provided any documentation to authenticate the provenance, age, or legality of the ivory offered for sale.

Until this year, auction houses and other sellers have not been required to certify the ivory being sold," said IFAW Campaigns Officer, Peter LaFontaine."And although the vast majority of retailers may not intentionally traffic in poached ivory, there is no way to know if an ivory carving on the auction block is antique or chiselled from the tusk of an elephant recently killed by poachers."

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service data indicate that individuals and businesses in the United States import and export a significant amount of legal and illegal ivory. The legal ivory market provides a screen under which a parallel illegal trade can thrive.

"We know from U.S. government reports that thousands of illegal pieces of ivory are smuggled into the United States every year; and we also know that auction houses are selling huge amounts of ivory without documentation," added LaFontaine. "It would be naive not to consider that some of the smuggled contraband ends up on the auction block."

IFAW’s three-month investigation into the auction industry focused on data obtained from from 340 auctions hosted by 223 auctioneers and galleries.

The U. S. Fish & Wildlife Service began drafting new regulations in February which, if finalized and implemented as proposed, would require ivory sellers to prove their wares are bona-fide antiques, therefore reducing the number of elephants poached today for US buyers.

"Among the many dealers and auction sites investigated, only one made the effort to verify that its ivory was antique," said IFAW Campaigns Director Beth Allgood."Traffickers are known to smuggle large quantities of illegal ivory into the United States every year, and we welcome strong rules proposed by the Fish & Wildlife Service to stop the US role in the elephant poaching crisis and save elephants from slaughter."

Julian R. Ellison, CEO of LiveAuctioneers, read the IFAW report and said he found it "eye-opening and sobering."

"LiveAuctioneers has always had a zero-tolerance policy toward the sale of illegal ivory. The Agreement our auction-house clients sign in order to use our services clearly states that they must not offer for sale through LiveAuctioneers any product of an animal species that is protected as endangered, or threatened, under applicable national or local laws. The IFAW report leads us to believe we have not gone far enough, so we are reaching out to the IFAW and asking that they help us educate auction houses who use LiveAuctioneers. Based on prior input we've received from auctioneers, they would welcome such guidance. They have no interest in selling illegal ivory or unwittingly contributing to the extinction of an endangered species."

Bidding Against Survival is the only current report on the US ivory market that covers the auction sector. It can be viewed online at http://www.ifaw.org/sites/default/files/IFAW-Ivory-Auctions-bidding-against-survival-aug-2014_0.pdf .

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ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE
Image courtesy of IFAW
Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 August 2014 14:31
 

Sale of comic strip art earns $74,040 for Parkinson’s research

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Written by Associated Press   
Tuesday, 12 August 2014 09:28

Bill Watterson and Stephan Pastis 'Pearls Before Swine' daily comic strip original art dated 6-5-2014 (Universal Uclick, 2014).

DALLAS (AP) – Artwork from Calvin and Hobbes creator Bill Watterson's three-day return to comics has brought more than $74,000 at auction to benefit Parkinson's research.

Dallas-based Heritage Auctions says the three comic strips sold Friday for a combined $74,040 to three collectors, all of whom wish to remain anonymous. Heritage had expected the strips to sell for more than $30,000 combined.

Watterson collaborated with Pearls Before Swine cartoonist Stephan Pastis in June after a long absence from the funny pages.

The artwork was sold on behalf of Team Cul de Sac, a charity established in honor of cartoonist Richard Thompson, who has Parkinson's. Proceeds will go to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

Calvin and Hobbes ended in 1995.

Copyright 2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

AP-WF-08-09-14 0057GMT



ADDITIONAL IMAGE OF NOTE

Bill Watterson and Stephan Pastis 'Pearls Before Swine' daily comic strip original art dated 6-5-2014 (Universal Uclick, 2014).  

Last Updated on Tuesday, 12 August 2014 09:32
 
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