Published: September 27, 2022
Beauty and peril were present at auction in the past week, with some of their greatest examples achieving top sales. Ito Shinsui’s “Snowy Night” immortalized one of the age’s anonymous “Modern Beauties” and hung beside a portrait of “Mrs Hollis French” by Adelaide Cole Chase. Ranking alongside these were two albums of photographs dedicated to an American soldier who fell during the liberation of France in World War II, and an affecting oil on canvas scene of a bombastic whale hunt. Read on for more of the week’s top sales.
NEW YORK CITY – Doyle auctioned part two of the collection of Jay I. Kislak to benefit the Kislak Family Foundation in a timed online auction that closed on September 15. Comprising rare books on the history of Florida and Mesoamerica, fine bindings, literature, exploration and voyages, autographs, maps and ephemera, the auction followed the firm’s successful first offering from the collection in June 2022. Acquired by Kislak at Doyle in 2014 were two finely bound tribute albums made from the citizens of St Cloud, France, to a fallen American soldier considered the first casualty of the American liberation of Paris during World War II. “We Remember,” the important tribute albums presented to Lawrence R. Kelly, an American casualty of the liberation, sold for $28,350. For information, www.doyle.com or 212-427-4141.
ASHEVILLE, N.C. – Flying highest of more than 1,000 lots offered in Brunk’s September 16-17 Premier auction was a rare bound volume titled Birds of Georgia, Consisting of the most rare and beautiful kinds, Drawn and Coloured from Nature by John Abbot, 1823, which realized $381,300. Its provenance included a private London library, the Savannah, Ga., collection of Robert Weitz and the Julian D. Kelly Jr Living Trust; it sold to a private collector against an estimate of $200/300,000. For information, 828-254-6846 or www.brunkauctions.com.
HILLSBOROUGH, N.C. – Leland Little Auctions’ September 10 Signature fall sale featured nine works by J.C. Leyendecker (American, 1874-1951), one of which – a study for a Saturday Evening Post cover – was the top lot of the event and achieved $24,000 from a trade buyer, double the lot’s high estimate. The cover had been a study for the 1926 Christmas issue and was – as were all of the Leyendeckers in the sale – from the collection of the late Keith Stanley, professor emeritus of classical studies at Duke University. For information, 919-644-1243 or www.lelandlittle.com.
LARCHMONT, N.Y. – The highest price in Clarke Auction Gallery’s September 11 Spectacular Estate Auction was the oil on canvas, “Te Deum,” by Mordecai Ardon (Polish/Israeli, 1896-1992), which inspired bidders to push it to $137,500 against an estimate of $60/90,000. The 1959 work had been extensively exhibited and published; all were noted in the catalog description, as was its provenance to a New York collection. For information, 914-833-8336 or www.clarkeny.com.
EAST DENNIS, MASS. – Locally consigned, an early Twentieth Century American school whaling scene made a big splash with bidders in Eldred’s September 8-9 marine and Americana auctions, going from an estimate of $500-$1,000 and an opening bid of $7,000. After heated competition, the 20-by-30-inch oil on canvas with intricate detailing and expressive whalemen found a new home with a private collector, bidding online, for $12,500. For information, 508-385-3116 or www.eldreds.com.
ALAMEDA, CALIF. – Michaan’s September 17 gallery auction offered one-of-a-kind items, which included but was not confined to jewelry, fine art, Asian art, furniture and decorative art. Notable was a Serbian Order of the Star of Karageorge medal, Serbia’s highest civilian and military decoration, that sold for an above-estimate $4,613. The approximately 3¼-inch diameter silver and enamel medal featured a central shield insignia within a ring of Old Church Slavonic translating to “For Faith and Liberty 1804.” This was over a white enamel cross intersected with crossed swords and rays emanating from the central portion. For information, www.michaans.com or 510-740-0220.
PHILADELPHIA – Material Culture’s no-reserve auction of the Sylvia and Philip Chaplain collection was conducted on September 19; its 533 lots consisting mainly of Asian art and antiques. The highest selling was a Japanese woodblock by Ito Shinsui (1898-1972) titled “Yuki no yo” (“Snowy Night”). Dated 1923, the print was from the series “Shin bijin junisigata,” or “12 New Images of Modern Beauties,” which was published by Watanabe Shozaburo and signed “Shinsui ga.” This series was released in a limited edition with this example stamped number 45 and sold online for $26,880 against an $8/16,000 estimate. For information, 215-438-4700 or www.materialculture.com.
NEW YORK CITY – Doyle New York offered 101 lots during its fine art auction on September 14, the top two of which were painted by Adelaide Cole Chase (American, 1868-1944). Chase was born into the Boston art community as the daughter of J. Foxcroft Cole, a landscape painter, and Belgian pianist Irma de Pelgrom. Her instructors included Frederic Porter Vinton, Edmund C. Tarbell at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, as well as Jean-Paul Laurens and Carolus-Duran in Paris. Chase is best known for her portraits, especially those of children. In this sale, the top lot was her likeness of “Mrs Hollis French,” circa 1898, which exceeded its $700-$1,000 estimate at $17,640. The second highest selling lot was of French’s daughter Rue Elizabeth, whose portrait Chase painted in 1916, and sold for $16,380 with the same estimate. For information, 214-427-2730 or www.doylenewyork.com.
DETROIT, MICH. – Found in the consignor’s laundry room, you could say she really cleaned house with the price on a Rene Portocarrero (Cuban 1912-1985) gouache, watercolor, ink and oil on heavy paper from 1943, which sold for $34,100 at DuMouchelles’ September 16-17 auction, The 17½-by-10-inch abstract composition was signed and dated 1943. It was purchased by a customer in New England. For information, www.dumouchelles.com or 313-963-6255.
December 6, 2022
December 6, 2022
December 6, 2022
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