Published: June 20, 2017
Paintings, sculptures, Goyard trunks, Navajo blankets and books round out this edition of Across The Block, featuring notable prices recently achieved at various auction houses.
MARLBOROUGH, MASS. – A Navajo child’s wearing blanket, tightly woven on a three-ply wool warp dyed yellow, with natural ivory, indigo handspun, soft green, and cochineal red dyed raveled wool, took $43,050 at Skinner’s American Indian and ethnographic sale on May 5. The 54-by-35-inch blanket exceeded its $20/30,0000 estimate. For information, 508-970-3231 or www.skinnerinc.com.
WINDSOR, CONN. – Nadeau’s Auction Gallery on May 20 featuring outdoor furnishings, antiques, custom mahogany and decorative accessories saw a lively oil painting by Rex Goreleigh (1902-1986) titled “The Social Hour” perform admirably at $31,000. The work that came from a New Jersey estate depicted African American couples dancing, clad in colorful clothing. For information, www.nadeausauction.com or 860-246-2444.
NEW YORK CITY – Shapiro Auctions’ May 31 sale of Modern and contemporary art and jewelry was topped by Maurice Utrillo’s (French, 1883-1955) “Rue Ivry,” 1924, an example of the artist’s famous cityscapes. The oil on board laid on canvas, 20-7/8 by 27-5/8 inches, sold for $150,000. It was signed and dated “Maurice Utrillo, V, Decembre 1924” lower right. For information, www.shapiroauctions.com or 212-717-7500.
CRANSTON, R.I. – Bruneau Auctioneers’ Asian arts sale on May 6 featured a Chinese Qing dynasty porcelain apple green glaze head of Buddha that tripled its high estimate to earn $1,875. The head, having a serene expression, is mounted on a tapered wood base, overall 15-3/8 inches tall. For information, www.Bruneauandco.com or 401- 533- 9980.
LARCHMONT, N.Y. – An initial barrage of internet interest drove up the price of a Zoltan Kemeny untitled patinated abstract metal sculpture in two parts when it crossed the block at Clarke Auction’s May 21 sale of fine art, Midcentury Modern, antiques, Asian, silver, jewelry and more. The final phone bidder, however, jumped the bids several times before finally winning it at $14,000, more than four times its high estimate. For information, www.clarkeny.com or 914-833-8336.
MANCHESTER, N.H. – On May 21 at the Radisson Hotel, Jones and Horan offered buyers nearly 500 items, including rare men’s vintage and modern wristwatches, European and collectible American pocket watches, estate jewelry and watch chains, ladies’ enameled pendant watches, ladies’ wristwatches, marine chronometers, deck watches, carriage clocks and related items. Leading the parade of choice timepieces was a Patek Philippe, Genéve, automatic perpetual calendar with moon phase, Ref 3945/1, 36mm, 18K yellow gold wristwatch. It sold for $24,500. There is no buyer’s premium or reserves at these sales. For information, www.jones-horan.com or 603-623-5314.
STURBRIDGE, MASS. – A couture Paquin walking suit, “Carloman,” winter 1908 was a standout lot in Augusta Auction’s spring catalog sale May 9, bringing $8,500, well over its $1,5/1,800 estimate. The three-piece wine wool flannel suit had an elongated jacket with military-style cord and tassel trim, a dark gray fur collar and cuffs, a faux black velvet vest and a trained narrow skirt. For information, 802-463-3333 or www.augusta-auction.com.
DELAWARE, OHIO – Garth’s Ohio Valley May 13 auction was led by a punched tin American safe that more than doubled its high estimate to bring $22,800. Furniture proved to be a strong category in this sale as a Pennsylvania Hepplewhite slant front desk performed near high estimate at $9,600, while an Ohio decorated blanket chest by Jacob Werrey (1838-1893) made $3,360. For information, www.garths.com or 740-362-4771.
FREEVILLE, N.Y. – Worth Auctions’ May 21 sale comprised a group of fine and decorative prints, watercolors, drawings and maps. Notable pieces included Bodmer’s “Moennitarri Warrior in the Costume of the Dog Danse” for $4,062; Thomas Moran’s “Grand Canyon of Arizona From Hermit Rim Road’ at $2,500; and Peter Schenk’s “America Septentrionalis Novissima” for $1,000. The sale also showcased an array of Seventeenth-Nineteenth Century natural history prints by such renowned artists as John James Audubon, Basil Besler and Mark Catesby, as well as important equestrian, sporting and nautical images. For information, www.worthauctions.com or 607-330-0358.
COPAKE, N.Y. – Copake’s estate auction on May 20 was filled with the firm’s usual mix of Eighteenth and Nineteenth Century, artwork, folk art, period accessories, china, glass, stoneware, primitives and more. A highlight was an early Goyard steamer trunk with fitted interior. Monogrammed on the outside “C.C.,” the 39-by-20½-by-19-inch piece of luggage hit ten times its high estimate, finishing at $10,238. For information 518-329-1142 or www.copakeauction.com.
SACRAMENTO, CALIF. – Selling at $16,250, a large McCormick painting dominated Witherell’s Western arts auction that ended May 16. One of the first women Impressionists, M. Evelyn McCormick (American, 1869-1948) became known for plein air oils of Monterey’s historic buildings and adobes, of which “Fremont House” was one. From the early part of the Twentieth Century, the 27-by-33-inch oil on board was estimated at $15/25,000. For information, 916-446-6490 or www.witherells.com.
CHICAGO – Leslie Hindman Auctioneers’ May 23-24 fine art sales featured highlights from numerous estates, which included three of the top selling lots by Rosemarie Trockel, Henri Le Sidaner and Thomas Hart Benton. The postwar and contemporary art, prints and American and European art auctions realized more than $4.6 million, with nearly 25 percent of lots sold selling above high estimates. Top selling lots confirmed the current uptick in the Impressionist and Modern market. Offered from an estate in St Louis was a Thomas Hart Benton still life from 1962 (shown) with an estimate of $100/200,000. With numerous bidders participating via phone, three bidders emerged who actively bid until the painting sold for $455,000 to a Midwest contender. From another Missouri estate, Henri Le Sidaner’s “Vieilles maisons Chartres,” 1921, realized $413,000 and sold to a buyer in London, while Rosemarie Trockel’s untitled (Pro), 1986, offered from a Chicago estate, sold for $389,000. For information, 312-600-6067 or www.lesliehindman.com.
FREEVILLE, N.Y. – National Book Auctions’ May 20 sale featured an array of rare and desirable printed material from multiple estates and personal collections nationwide, led by an early edition of Charles Wilkes’ Narrative of the United States Exploring Expedition at $3,750; David Roberts’ profusely illustrated six-volume set, The Holy Land, for $3,500; and the Pageant Books facsimile of the Gutenberg Bible at $2,125. For information, www.nationalbookauctions.com, 607-330-0358 or 877-BOOK-070.
MOUNT KISCO, N.Y. – The Benefit Shop Foundation’s May 17 Red Carpet sale included scores of folk art and maritime material from a prominent Nantucket estate. As anticipated from the number of previewers in attendance and internet inquiries, the auction house and internet brought in bidders from far and near. The standout lot of the sale was an 1896 framed poster depicting Sutro Baths comprising multiple panels and measuring 83 by 77½ inches. The image of the world’s largest indoor swimming complex erected on the West Coast, capable of hosting up to 10,000 patrons, fetched $17,780. For information, www.thebenefitshop.org. or 914-864-0707.
HATFIELD, PENN. – A 1966 Austin-Healey Mark III 3000 brought worldwide interest at Alderfer Auction’s fine and decorative arts auction recently. It ended with the rare treasure selling for $24,575 to a phone bidder from France. Alderfer Auction Center was abuzz with a packed house and a record number of phone bids. All hardwired phones were in use along with many employees on their cellphones, some with translators. The tennis match between auctioneer, the floor bidder and the phone bids continued to raise the excitement level to a small roar. This one-owner sports car had its original convertible top, manual transmission with electric overdrive and 47,729 miles. It was a “barn find,” driven into storage in 1981 and remained there until 2017. For information, 215-393-3000 or www.alderferauction.com.
POINT PLEASANT, PENN. – The Peggy Knowlton collection of Twentieth Century Zimbabwean art was the focus of a June 11 sale conducted by Material Culture. The standout item was Bywell Sango’s (Zimbabwean, Twentieth Century) “New Horizons,” an opal stone sculpture measuring 44 by 18 by 10 inches, which realized $4,128. The no-reserve auction featured more than 1,000 lots of Shona sculpture, which has been described by Newsweek as “perhaps the most important new art form to emerge from Africa in the Twentieth Century.” For information, www.materialculture.com or 215-438-4700.
DANIA BEACH, FLA. – The surprise lot of Kodner Galleries’ June 7 fine arts, antiques and estate jewelry auction on June 7 was a pair of early Twentieth Century etched crystal lamps attributed to Edward F. Caldwell & Co., New York City, one of the leading manufacturers of lighting from the late Nineteenth to early Twentieth Century. Four phone bidders and internet bidders vied for the lamps, which had an estimate of $600/800. The lamps brought $5,566. For information, www.kodner.com or 954-925-2550.
BEVERLY, MASS. – A Nineteenth Century carved Italian marble skull “mask” with newer stand scared off competing lots to grab top honors at Kaminski’s June 11 Asian antiques and estates auction, While much of the auction’s focus was on Asian items, the skull mask, unsigned and approximately 15 by 10 by 7½ inches on a 3½-inch base, came from a Rome, Italy, estate. It brought a total of $12,500. For information, 978-927-2223 or www.kaminskiauctions.com.
DALLAS – Dallas Auction Gallery’s May 24 decorative art auction was led by a Chinese Qianlong export porcelain bowl (shown) and a set of two Hokusai prints, each of which sold with a price realized of $15,000. Just behind was a pair of antique 12-inch terrestrial and celestial globes, which fetched $13,750. For information, 214-653-3900 or www.dallasauctiongallery.com.
SOUTH CERNEY, GLOUCESTERSHIRE, ENGLAND – A rare and highly valuable Nineteenth Century work of Russian literature dating back to the reign of the last tsar was sold in the United Kingdom on June 14 as a Birmingham City University collection went to auction. The 28 lots of some 200 books, mostly published in the Nineteenth and early Twentieth Century, included a copy of the illustrated Antiquities of the Russian Empire, edited by a Russian count and issued in four volumes in 1892. The volumes brought $46,605, auctioned at Dominic Winter Auctioneers. Proceeds from the sale will be reinvested in new learning resources for students at the UK university. For information, +44 121 331 6738 or www.bcu.ac.uk.
DETROIT – On the last day of a three-day auction conducted June 9-11 at DuMouchelle’s auction galleries, a bronze sculpture titled “Caucasian Warrior Lighting His Pipe” by Russian artist Leonid Posen (1849-1921), sold at $23,500. The sculpture stands 18½ inches high, without the red marble base, and while signed in Cyrillic, there is no foundry mark. For information, 313-963-6255 or www.dumoart.com.
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