Sir William Orpen’s penetrating portrait of the English Academy Award nominated actress Gladys Cooper sold for a hammer price of 175,000 at Whyte’s in Dublin this evening. Painted in 1924 had been estimated at 80,000-120,000.
This continues the trend established at the previous Whyte’s auction where many lots sold above the high estimate and where internet bidders competed from around the world for the best of Irish art. After a prolonged period in the doldrums the market for the best of Irish art is once again on the rise.
At the same sale Sir John Lavery’s A Bacchante sold for an above estimate hammer price of 135,000 at hammer. Painted in 1910 it had been estimated at 60,000-80,000. It had been exhibited at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters in London in that year as Mrs. Ralph Peto.
Whyte’s md Ian Whyte said the sale: “Produced the best results for us since 2008”. The auction grossed just over one million euro and was 85% sold. There was significant interest from outside Ireland and but Irish collectors and dealers were active too. About 70% went to Irish clients.
(See post on antiquesandartireland.com for May 15, 2015)