Published: July 3, 2018
There’s a good mix in this week’s Across The Block, including flying high prices for a William Staite-Murray vase, a Galle Clematis cameo glass lamp and a Rutherford B. Hayes archive of 153 items on the 1876 election in South Carolina. Check them all out below!
LONDON – A seemingly understated vase by modern British ceramicist William Staite-Murray (1881-1962) achieved what may be a record for the artist when it sold at Bonhams’ Knightsbridge’s June 20 sale for $32,937 against an estimate of $1,990/2,650. The vase, which was an unusually tall size at just more than 32½ inches, had been made around 1955 and bore a 1959 paper exhibition label from a private British collector and was purchased by another private collector bidding over the phone. For information, www.bonhams.com or +44 20 7393 3860.
THOMASTON, MAINE – Thomaston’s live online-only auction, The Curious Collector, on June 20 offered vintage toys, early radios, African masks, original artwork, lighting and plenty of “eccentric indulgences.” There were some big surprises. The highest flying item was a war shield that brought $2,040, ten times its low estimate. The Oceanic Bontoc Philippines Igrot tribal war “Headhunter” shield was of carved wood with plaited fiber. Dating to the Nineteenth Century, it had a recessed hand hold center back and a decorative brass band at end of each stalk. Measuring 46 by 10 inches, it came from the estate of David Boynton, Brunswick, Maine. For information, www.thomastonauction.com or 207-354-8141.
INDIANAPOLIS, IND. – Ripley Auctions was the first to offer the public a selection from the personal vintage jewelry collection of Carol Tanenbaum, who has been collecting costume jewelry for more than 25 years. The collection numbers some 30,000 pieces dating from the Victorian period to today’s collectibles, and Part I of the sale was conducted on June 18. The highest price, $2,160, was achieved for a signed Har 1950s gold figural link Genie bracelet, brooch and earring set with glass crystal balls, jewels and rhinestones (shown), while a rare complete unsigned Hobe vanity set with clutch purse, two hair combs, brooch and necklace in amber and green faceted crystal jewels took $1,800. For additional information, 317-251-5635 or www.ripleyauctions.com.
DENVER, PENN. – Morphy Auctions offered lamps, glass and jewelry at the firm’s June 20-21 gallery auction. A variety of luxury glass and lamp lots, as well as vintage jewels were spotlighted. Top honors went to a rare monumental Galle Clematis cameo glass lamp, which beat its $120/150,000 estimate to reach $184,500. Blue clematis flowers and olive green leaves and stems are set against a rich yellow background on the lamp. The shade rests on a matching base with huge clematis flowers on the front and back, and its original three-arm spider support with each arm stylized Art Nouveau scarab beetle at its tip. This model is the largest of the lamps that Galle made, at 31 inches tall, with a 20½-inch-diameter shade. For information, www.morphyauctions.com or 877-968-8880.
NEW YORK CITY – On June 21, Swann Galleries concluded its auction season of books and manuscripts with Revolutionary and presidential Americana from the collection of William Wheeler III – some 230 works on paper, including autographs of 36 presidents, manuscript material illuminating the American Revolution and a selection of Jacksoniana. Topping the sale was a Rutherford B. Hayes archive of 153 items on the 1876 election in South Carolina, including 152 manuscript items and one printed document, all sleeved in four binders. The archive’s main focus was the South Carolina governor’s race rather than the Hayes-Tilden contest at the top of the ticket. Estimated at $5/7,500, it finished at $23,400. For information, 212-254-4710 or www.swanngalleries.com.
CRANSTON, R.I. – A private buyer bidding on the telephone turned the lights on at Bruneau & Co Auctioneers’ June 23 sale when they purchased a Tiffany Studios Poppy twisted vine table lamp for $125,000, well ahead of its estimate of $30/50,000. The collector must have liked what he or she saw because the same bidder purchased a pair of Tiffany Studios green Favrile table lamp screens for $20,000. Both lots were from the same Providence, R.I., estate. For additional information, www.bruneauandco.com or 401-533-9980.
LONDON – The “ex-Sinzheimer” Guadagnini violin closed for a new world record of $2,105,305 at a June 25 auction, $700,000 more than the previous world record. The instrument is attributed to Turin, Italy, violin maker Giovanni Battista Guadagnini, circa 1773-75. It bears a facsimile label, “Joannes Baptista Guadagnini Placentinus…” For more information, 212-307-7224 (New York), 800-814-4188 (New York toll free), +44 20 7354 5763 (London) or www.tarisio.com.
CINCINNATI, OHIO – Cowan’s summer American history auction got underway on June 22 and was led by a rare image said to document the birth of the Wild West Show, showing three Western legends together at the beginning of their short-lived partnership. Realizing $15,600, the 5½-by-8-inch albumen photograph, although uncredited, was taken by Rockwood or Gurney of New York City, circa 1873. Shown are “Wild Bill” Hickok, “Texas Jack” Omohundro and “Buffalo Bill” Cody. In December 1872, Cody and Omohundro appeared together in the stage show “Scouts of the Prairie,” which featured the well-known frontier scouts as live actors. This photograph was taken in late 1873, when Wild Bill Hickok joined them as the third star in the renamed production “Scouts of the Plains” during the show’s second season. The photograph had descended directly in the family of William F. Cody. For information, 513-871-1670 or www.cowans.com.
COPAKE, N.Y. – Copake’s June 23 unreserved estate auction featured Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century furniture, artwork, folk art, period accessories, china, glass, stoneware, primitives and more. A total of 724 lots sold, competed for by 1,566 registered bidders. Among the highlights, an early polychrome wooden boxing sculpture, possibly a trade sign, 45 inches wide by 50½ inches high, sold for $2,950, nearly double its high estimate. For information, 518-329-1142 or www.copakeauction.com.
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