Published: March 23, 2004
Topping Applebrook Auction’s February 19 sale was a handsome Eighteenth Century English walnut chest-on-chest, “a rare find in walnut,” said owner and auctioneer Mitchell Borenstein.
Opening with four phone bids at $6,750, the crowded room burst into spirited bidding, the price escalating rapidly among phone and room buyers, until a dealer from Westchester County, N.Y., took the bid for $14,950.
The 300-lot sale included rdf_Descriptions from several estates in Litchfield and Fairfield counties that had been in the same families for generations. There were 132 registered bidders, including 45 phone and 87 absentees.
Also exciting was the bidding for an impressive early Eighteenth Century Italian heavily carved trestle table and eight chairs (probably Seventeenth Century) from an estate in Litchfield, Conn. A dealer from Manhattan bought the table for $10,062 and the chairs sold to an absentee bidder for $1,437.
An early carved French armoire with bird crest went to a dealer from Westchester for $4,255; an Eighteenth Century English serpentine four-drawer chest in flame mahogany with inlaid banding, sold for $4,140; and an unusual Nineteenth Century Victorian bookcase, with glass doors, many carved lions’ heads and paw feet brought $3,105.
A pair of Nineteenth Century French tole washstands with old faux wood grain, in original paint, with marble tops, sold to an absentee buyer for $2,012; four early Dutch ladder back painted chairs with rush seats, river scenes and colorful floral design, reached $1,725; and six Empire chairs, with open backs, upholstered striped seats, reached $1,840.
Top in the fine art category was “Venetian Lagoon” a 271/4- by 34-inch oil painting by William Posey Silva (1859-1948), a well-known California artist, depicting a ship in the harbor in pastel shades. Opening at $4,500, a phone buyer from Massachusetts bought it for $10,637. A large imposing pastel of a society woman, dressed in a sleek black gown against a red background, by Guy Hoff, a famous Hollywood portrait artist in the early 1940s, brought$1,955.
A highlight of the sale was a lifelong collection of Austrian miniature bronzes from an estate in Southbury, Conn. The 46 lots, consisting mostly of animals, included two cat bands with various musical instruments, dogs, rabbits, pigs, squirrels and foxes. Sales went from $70 per lot to $750 per lot. Top lots included a signed and numbered Austrian bronze letter holder with rabbit figures, bringing $862.
Antique clocks created a flurry of activity and interest. Frank and Meg DePasqua of Red Barn Antiques, Monroe, Conn., were the successful bidders of the Tiffany & Co tall-case grandfather clock, paying $12,362. The handsome mahogany clock had a decorative brass dial, topped with a moon face, and a large pendulum with five pipes and chimes enclosed in a glass case.
“It was the best purchase we ever made,” said Meg DePasqua who has been collecting antiques forever.
Other select clocks included an 1850 tall-case Viennese clock with hand-etched brasses for $2,990 and a Seventeenth/Eighteenth Century hanging Dutch clock with overall inlaid floral design closing at $1,265. A Nineteenth Century American Regina music box with beautiful sound, out of a Litchfield County estate, sold for $2,760.
China and glassware included a 19-piece lot of early Italian china. It attracted the interest of two phone bidders from the United States and England who aggressively bid the lot to $2,070. Similarly appealing was approximately 300 pieces of Richard Ginori china, broken into a lot of 144 pieces, a 12-place dinner service, serving pieces and flower frogs. It totaled $2,300. Two French Eighteenth Century early creamware urns, intensely bid by two phone buyers, reached $1,006. A gold iridescent Tiffany Favrile bowl, signed LTC, also brought $1,006.
All prices include a 15 percent buyer’s premium.
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