Published: April 28, 2020
NEW YORK CITY – Doyle’s online-only auction of American Paintings, Furniture & Decorative Arts on April 21 saw strong prices for American paintings of the Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, including fine examples of Hudson River, Western and regional landscapes and marine paintings. The American silver section of the sale also garnered exceptional results, led by Nineteenth Century Baltimore silver and iconic designs by Tiffany & Co.
With competitive bidding throughout the sale, the auction totaled a successful $857,781 against an estimate of $637,100/977,750 with a strong 85 percent sold by lot and 99 percent by value.
An unnamed private collection was the source of several of the auction’s highest selling paintings. The top lot of the day was an oil sketch by Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902) that soared past its estimate of $30/50,000 to achieve a remarkable $106,250. Oil sketches like “Sunset Over the Trees,” done in preparation for larger canvases, highlight the artist’s attention to color and confident brushwork. “View on the Hudson,” circa 1875-78, by George Inness (1825-1894) fetched many times its estimate of $6/8,000, realizing $34,375. Thomas Hill (1829-1908) studied painting at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Art and was associated with the artists George Inness and Albert Bierstadt. Hill moved to San Francisco and became known for his views of the Yosemite Valley, such as “Nevada Falls, Yosemite,” which sold for $23,750, exceeding its estimate of $12/18,000.
A dream-like view of New York harbor was painted in 1874 by Edward Moran sold for $16,250, surpassing its estimate of $10/15,000. Older brother to fellow artist Thomas Moran, Edward was widely considered one of the most significant Nineteenth Century maritime painters, and this crisp scene displays his masterful handling of the subject matter.
Bidding in the American silver section of the auction was equally competitive. Highlights included an elaborately decorated circa 1900 Baltimore punch set by Hennegan Bates Co. that realized $11,250, over its estimate of $7/10,000. Among the numerous flatware services were examples by Tiffany & Co., all of which brought strong results. Among these were a service in the Chrysanthemum pattern that surpassed its estimate of $5/7,000, selling for $11,875; and a service in the Bamboo pattern that fetched $9,375, more than double its estimate of $3/4,000. “We were thrilled with the silver results,” commented Doyle’s silver specialist, Todd Sell, after the sale. “We did not see any hesitation from bidders and achieved good prices across the board.”
The decorative arts section of the sale was highlighted by a group of seven ceramic equestrian figures, circa 1945, by Kathleen Wheeler Crump (1884-1977) that sold for $9,375, doubling their estimate of $3/5,000. The British born artist lived in Canada early in life, on a ranch, where she sketched horses and developed a keen knowledge of equestrian anatomy. She eventually settled in the Washington, DC, area and gained fame for her portraits of champion racehorses.
Included in the sale were 19 lots of property from the estate of Arthur Gross. In the 1960s, Gross owned Kaye & Gross, an antiques shop in Manhattan’s East 70s, when he met a young Bill Doyle, who had opened his own antiques store in the East 80s, which became Doyle Auctioneers & Appraisers. Gross and Doyle established a friendship through their shared passion for Americana. Artie had a deep, scholarly knowledge of American furniture, which he generously shared with collectors, curators and others in the trade.
All prices include the buyer’s premium as reported by the auction house. For more information, www.doyle.com or 212-427-2730.
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