Published: March 6, 2018
MANHEIM, PENN. – Witman Auctioneers conducted a public auction on February 17 at Encks Banquet & Conference Center. There were 183 registered bidders in attendance. An Abner Zook three-dimensional painting of a six-horse team pulling a Conestoga wagon crossing a stream sold for $28,050, while an Aaron Zook covered bridge and summer cottage painting brought $1,100. For information, www.witmanauctioneers.com, 717-665-5735 or 717-665-1300.
STANSTED MOUNTFITCHET, ESSEX, UNITED KINGDOM – A Nineteenth Century Victorian hoax, a novelty taxidermy specimen constructed of part fish, part monkey, and then preserved and presented on a display stand, was first shown in London in 1822, and then became the famous “Feejee Mermaid,” exhibited by master showman PT Barnum in New York in 1842. On February 13 at Sworders’ Out of the Ordinary auction, this 3-foot 8-inch specimen, estimated at $1,4/2,000, sold for $8,375 (price converted from British pounds to US dollars at press time). For more information, +44 1279 817 778 or www.sworder.co.uk.
LITCHFIELD, CONN. – A portrait of an Arabian horse with a manor house beyond, from the South Kent, Conn., collection of a prominent artist, was the top lot at Litchfield County Auctions’ winter antiques sale, February 24. The Eighteenth Century oil on canvas portrait came to the block with an $800-$1,200 estimate that was left in the dust as the 28-by-36-inch painting raced to $12,187. Signed and dated 177?, the painting came in a 33-by-41-inch frame and sold to an anonymous bidder. For information, www.litchfieldcountyauctions.com or 860-567-4661.
LONG ISLAND CITY, N.Y. – On February 25, Capo Auction sold a pair of Meissen-style porcelain urns for $13,750. Each with domed cover and flower finial, the 27-inch-high urns came to the block with a $250 opening bid and a $500/700 estimate; they jumped immediately to $4,000 and competing bids pushed the ornately colorful pair to the final price. For information, www.capoauctionnyc.com or 718-433-3710.
MONROVIA, CALIF. – On February 20 at John Moran’s Traditional Collector auction, a lot estimated at $800-$1,200 proved to be that elusive sleeper in one of the most popular auctions at the Monrovia company. A group of eight Chinese carved jade items inspired strong interest before the sale, and that led to protracted online and in-house bidding. One determined floor bidder finally won the prize by paying $19,200 at the block. For information, 626-793-1833 or www.johnmoran.com.
ONLINE – Cowan’s American History timed online auction that closed on February 26 comprised a wide range of early photography, autographs, manuscripts, advertising, political ephemera and more. A top highlight at the Cincinnati, Ohio-based firm was a Civil War CDV album with photos of some pretty notable figures, such as Jefferson Davis, Henry Clay, John Brown, Andrew Johnson and Stonewall Jackson, among others. Selling for $2,280, the 9Ã¾-by-12-inch album had leather covers and brass locking clasp and mountings containing hand painted flowers, with space for 200 cartes (four per page), of which 78 contained CDVs. For information, 513-871-1670 or www.cowans.com.
BARCELONA, SPAIN – An oil painting “Desnudo femenino en interior (Female nude in interior)” by the Celso Lagar sold on February 25 at auction house La Suite, bought by a private individual from Spain. This is the second largest result of a sale of a painting by Lagar in Spain, after “El desayuno (The breakfast),” which reached $160,000 in 2006 at another Spanish auction house. The painting, dated 1917, received bids from various Spanish cities, both by phone and via internet, as well as from a potential international buyer who came to Barcelona to be able to see the painting in the flesh. The lively auction also reached excellent prices for design pieces and furniture. For information, www.suitesubastas.com or +34 631 574 584.
NEW YORK City – Doyle’s jewelry auction on February 21 offered a wide range of jewelry. Showcased were glittering creations – including many signed pieces – set with diamonds, colored stones and pearls, as well as gold jewelry, watches and gentlemen’s accessories. Highlighting the auction was a ring set with a glittering heart-shaped diamond of approximately 21.93 carats that soared over its estimate of $40/60,000 to achieve $100,000. With competitive bidding in the salesroom, on the telephones and via the internet, the sale totaled $2,163,469, with 90 percent sold by lot and 97 percent sold by value. For information, www.doyle.com or 212-427-2730.
RUNNEMEDE, N.J. – When the catalog for the Goldin’s 2018 winter auction came out, collectors knew that there were potentially several record-setting items being offered. They were right. By the time the last bid was placed, records were smashed as nearly 1,100 lots of sports, entertainment and pop culture memorabilia sold for $3.5 million, the most-ever for the company’s annual winter auction event. To nobody’s surprise, the highlight of the night was a 2017 New England Patriots Super Bowl LI Championship Ring – Tom Brady Family Ring – with original presentation box and original Jostens’ “Brady” certificate selling for a record $344,927. The ring has 265 diamonds compared to the 283 that Brady’s actual ring has and is slightly smaller than a player’s ring. The ring comes with a letter of appraisal from its maker, Jostens, for Brady. The price was a record for a football ring. For information, www.goldinauctions.com or 856-767-8550.
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