Published: May 8, 2012
Tiffany dominated the day at Clarke Auction Gallery during the most recent sale conducted Sunday afternoon, April 15. A large crowd was on hand for the auction, and the gallery reported a tremendous number of absentee bids and requests for telephone bidding during the days leading up to the auction. The sale included a good selection of paintings, antique and midcentury furniture, potteries and porcelains, as well as a good selection of silver.
The auction began with an interesting assortment of art that ranged from contemporary to a couple of Eighteenth Century oils †and everything in between. A brisk pace for the auction was set early on as one of the first lots to cross the auction block, a Peter Max acrylic on canvas, sold well above estimates. Attracting attention from a host of collectors and dealers, the painting depicting a heart, had several telephone bidders and several in the crowd chasing the lot. Bidding was quickpaced, with it hammering down at $2,560.
Other paintings sold included an unsigned oil on canvas with Andre Derain labels on the verso. The landscape, consigned from a local home, sold at $4,080. An early oil by German artist Fritz Wagner depicting a tavern scene sold at $3,240, an oil by English artist Christopher Sanders titled “Fields of Lavender” sold at $3,000, and a Francisco Serra oil of a “beauty” realized $2,160.
Leading the auction was a leaded glass chandelier by Tiffany Studios that was consigned from a home in Garrison, N.Y., where it had hung for the past 30 years. The rare lighting fixture was “Moorish” in design and included six drop pendant fixtures with favrile glass shades hanging from chains, a series of large turtleback tiles ringing the top and descending leaded glass rectangular panels forming the lower portion of the dome. Clarke’s research indicated that these hanging lamps were not regular production items and were not assigned identifying numbers typical of other Tiffany lighting fixtures. Similar examples were noted by the auctioneer, but none had all of the bells and whistles that this example was fitted with. Some were just leaded glass shades, some were made without the turtleback tiles, as well as several other varieties.
Measuring 32 inches tall and 22 inches in diameter, the rare fixture carried a presale estimate of $60/80,000. As the lot crossed the auction block, several telephone bidders were lined up along with a couple interested parties in the gallery. Auctioneer Ronan Clarke opened the lot for bidding at $60,000, with a client in the gallery hitting the lot right away. Bids bounced back and forth between the phones and a private buyer in the gallery, until the bidder in the room claimed the lot at $102,000.
A large selection of silver was offered, with a Tiffany chrysanthemum pattern tea service leading the way. Cataloged as a “magnificent” set in the “most desirable pattern,” the service consisting of tray, kettle on stand, coffeepot, teapot, milk vessel, lidded bowl, sauceboat creamer and waste bowl, weighed in at an impressive 551 troy ounces. Consigned from a Mamaroneck estate, the lot was fresh to the market and generated quite a bit of presale interest. As the lot crossed the auction block, telephone bidders, Internet bidders and several in the room chased the rare service, with it ultimately selling to the telephones at $49,200.
Other silver sold included a four-piece tea service by Russian maker Adolph Sper that sold at $6,000, while a Gorham flatware service consisting of 72 pieces realized $2,510.
A good selection of antique furniture was led by an Art Deco inlaid daybed and armoire, consigned from the Garrison estate, that brought $9,000 and $18,000, respectively. A Chesterfield leather sofa went out at $2,400.
Midcentury items were popular, with a burl walnut extension table by Eppinger Furniture Company, and consigned from Jim Eppinger’s home, sold at $2,400. A pair of Barcelona chairs sold at $1,560; a Charles Eames rosewood chair and ottoman, $2,160; and a pair of Robsjohn-Gibbings one-drawer stands went out at $3,480. A lot of several assorted midcentury chairs must have had a sleeper in their midst, as active bidding pushed the selling price to $2,640.
A French dore bronze four-panel picture frame surprised many in the crowd. Estimated at $300/500, the lot took off, with bidders pushing the selling price to $2,400.
Also sold was a large Sarouk carpet fresh from an estate that hammered at $2,400.
Prices include the buyer’s premium. For information, 914-833-8336, or w ww.ClarkeNY.com .
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