Published: October 23, 2007
Russian paintings dominated the day at Gene Shapiro’s inaugural art auction this past Saturday, October 20, with numerous record prices paid at auction established throughout the course of the sale. Calling it a “highly successful auction,” Shapiro, formerly associated with Trinity Fine Arts, was thrilled with the international response that the auction received and the often-times hefty prices realized.
Leading the auction was an unusual Vasily Stinikov oil on canvas, measuring 29 by 55 inches, that depicted a fantasia cityscape with a host of villagers taking part in a variety of activities outside of city walls that surrounded numerous onion-domed buildings. Stinikov boldly portrayed himself in a semi-unfinished corner of the painting, as a teacher with a student, adding finishing touches to the work.
The lower left corner was void of the snowflakes that covered the rest of the scene and was also an area where some of the figures were painted as mere outlines, obviously awaiting colorful details. Humorously, Stinikov and his student were depicted as having attracted quite a crowd of onlookers as they add snowflakes to the scene.
Bidding on the lot was quick paced, with the lot handily exceeding the $40/60,000 presale estimates. The lot opened at $40,000 with several of the eight phone bidders getting in on the action until the lot cleared $150,000. From there a single phone bidder and an Internet bidder hammered away at each other, with the Stinikov painting selling to the Internet at $477,900.
Other top lots included another Stinikov painting at $101,575, and a mixed media work by Eugene Ruhkin that fetched $113,525.
A complete review will appear in a future issue.
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