Published: February 14, 2023
Review by Z.G. Burnett; Images Courtesy Roland Auctions NY
GLEN COVE, N.Y. — The February 2023 installment of Roland Auctions’ Estates sale on February 4 brought almost 1,000 lots to the podium that showcased fine art, decorative arts, jewelry and textiles. The sale attracted an international pool of bidders both online and on the floor. With a 91 percent buy-through rate, the auction total was $464,312 with most of the top lots selling within or above their estimates.
At the top of the sales table was a 12-piece set of Royal Copenhagen Flora Danica dinner and salad plates, all marked, for $31,250. The Flora Danica pattern is more than 230 years old and referred to as one of the most important “Danish cultural treasures.” In 1752, King Frederik V of Denmark commissioned botanist Georg Christian Oeder to record all of the country’s plants, and these became the designs for Flora Danica that are still produced today.
The first set was made as a reconciliation offering from the king to Empress Catherine II of Russia, who did not live to see the porcelain, and is on view today at Rosenborg Castle, Christianborg Castle and Amalienborg Palace. These plates were bought by a bidder from Florida.
Next in price was a painting by Armenian/Russian artist Georgy Zakharovich Bashinzhagyan (1857-1925), who specialized in bucolic landscapes with special attention to the use of light for expressing the time of day.
“Mountain Landscape” is unusual; it initially appears to be a daytime scene, but could very well be a nocturnal landscape illuminated by a bright full moon. A figure in the lower left corner emphasizes the largeness of nature in contrast to the human experience, and a United Kingdom buyer purchased the work for $16,250.
Another top lot was an 1896 lithographic poster by Alphonse Mucha (Czech, 1860-1939), advertising the American tour of celebrity performer Sarah Bernhardt (French, 1844-1923).
One of the most famous actresses in stage history, Bernhardt is triumphantly dressed in an Asian-inspired costume holding a frond, her name arching above in Art Nouveau lettering that has become synonymous with Mucha’s distinctive style. The poster sold to a buyer in the Czech Republic for $13,750.
Prices quoted with buyer’s premium as reported by the auction house. The first part of the Phyllis Lucas Gallery Collection will be auctioned by Roland on March 3.
For information, 212-260-2000 or www.rolandauctions.com.
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