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  • Archive for December, 2017

    A GREAT YEAR FOR CHRISTIE’S IN FRANCE

    Sunday, December 10th, 2017

    Jean-Paul Riopelle, Untitled (1953).

    Christie’s French Post-War and Contemporary Art Sales achieved a combined annual total of 96,553,150 this year, the highest realised to date. Led by Jean-Paul Riopelle’s monumental 1953 painting Untitled, December auctions brought in 21,447,000.  The Riopelle made 4,882,500,, a new world record at auction for the artist. There were records too for Friedensreich Hundertwasser’s Ville vue d’au-delà du soleil (523,500) and Pierrette Bloch’s Sans titre (12,50 ).

    Paul Nyzam, Head of Evening Auction, Post-War and Contemporary Art, Christie’s, Paris said: “The outstanding totals for the December season follow the success of our October FIAC auctions, which underlined continued growth with a 110% increase on the equivalent sales from 2016.”

    EL GRECO TOPS CHRISTIE’S OLD MASTERS AUCTION

    Friday, December 8th, 2017

    El Greco – Saint Francis and Brother Leo in Meditation

    El Greco’s Saint Francis and Brother Leo in Meditation was the top lot at Christie’s Old Masters evening sale in London on December 7.  From the Collection of Stanford Z. Rothschild, Jr. it sold for £6,871,250.  This is the second highest price for the artist at auction.

    The sale totalled £21,772,000.  There was a new world record for Bartholomäus Spranger with Mercury carrying Psyche to Mount Olympus, which  made £3,368,750.  The sale saw registered bidders from 30 countries, across five continents.

    Henry Pettifer, Head of Christie’s Old Master Paintings EMERI: “2017 is the second consecutive record year for Old Masters at Christie’s. With 78% of lots selling above estimate, tonight’s sale was 93% sold by value, the second highest sell-through rate by value for Old Masters, Christie’s London. The sale proved the healthy demand for 16th and 17th century Dutch and Flemish paintings, demonstrated by the highly competitive bidding for the works by Spranger, Rembrandt, Ruisdael and Teniers, among others. We were pleased to see El Greco’s superb Saint Francis and Brother Leo in Meditation set the second highest price for the artist at auction, and for the new record for the Spranger which is one of the finest mannerist pictures to come to the market in recent memory.”

    ART AND COLLECTIBLES AT WHYTE’S CHRISTMAS SALE

    Thursday, December 7th, 2017

    Original works by many well-known names in the art world along with a range of collectibles at affordable prices will all feature at Whyte’s annual Christmas auction in Dublin at 6 p.m.  on December 11.  The sale will include 100 works by the renowned Donegal artist, Robert Taylor Carson, offered by his estate.

    There is some rare and interesting wine and whiskey, jewellery and silver from the early 1800s to the 1920s. Other attractive lots include rare limited edition books,  entertainment and sporting memorabilia and collectibles.  The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    Chateau D’ Yquem Sur Saluces 1962. (150-200)

    Locke’s Kilbeggan Single Malt Irish Whiskey, 1946, one bottle. (400-600)

    Cinema poster – Carry on Cowboy (500-700)

    A Chinese blue and white porcelain garlic-mouth bottle vase. (2,000-3,000)

    Markey Robinson (1918-1999) STILL LIFE WITH JUG AND FRUIT
    (700-900)

    Robert Taylor Carson HRUA (1919-2008) CONNEMARA WOMAN ADMIRING THE PONIES, 1999 (600-1,200)

    NEW £7.2 MILLION RECORD FOR JOSEPH WRIGHT OF DERBY

    Wednesday, December 6th, 2017

    Joseph Wright of Derby, A.R.A. An Academy by Lampligh

    One of Joseph Wright of Derby’s most important candlelit pictures, and one of the last major works by the artist remaining in private hands, made a £7,263,700 record for the artist at Sotheby’s in London tonight.

    An Academy by Lamplight, painted in 1769, is a supreme example of Wright’s dramatic rendering of light, which in itself is a kind of metaphor for the Enlightenment movement with which he was so closely associated: the introduction of light into darkness acting as a metaphor for the transition from religious faith to scientific understanding and enlightened rationalism. Almost certainly the picture that Wright exhibited at the Society of Artists in 1769, this rare painting was first securely recorded in the collection of Sir Savile Crossley, 1st Baron Somerleyton (1857-1935), the scion of a great carpet manufacturing dynasty from Halifax, and has remained in the possession of his family ever since. It had been estimated at £2.5-3.5 million.

    The previous record for the artist was set in 2007 when Portrait of Robert Shore Milnes, with his horse and groom beyond sold for £3,647,830 at Sotheby’s New York.

    Two recently rediscovered landscapes by John Constable attracted competitive bidding: a first sketch for The Opening of Waterloo Bridge, c. 1819–20  made £2,289,000:  Dedham Vale with the River Stour in Flood, c. 1814-17 made £1,809,000.

    THE WORLD DESCRIBED c1726 AT FONSIE MEALY

    Tuesday, December 5th, 2017

    The World Described; or A New and Correct Sett of Maps, shewing the Several Empires, Kingdoms, Republics, Principalities, Provinces & c., in all known parts of the Earth sold for a hammer price of 30,000 at Fonsie Mealy’s rare books sale in Dublin today.  Hermann Moll’s C1726 opus is complete with fine contemporary hand coloured folding maps with 30 large hand coloured maps.  Map Number 7, of North America, shows California as an island.

    The London cartographer’s maps are entitled: 1. The World in Two Hemispheres 2. A Map of the Whole World 3. Europe 4. Asia 5. The East-Indies 6. Africa 7. North-America 8. The Dominions of the King of Great Britain on the Continent of North-America 9. The North Part of America 10. The West-Indies 11. South-America 12. A New and Exact Map of the Coasts Countries and Islands within the limits of the South Sea Company 13. Moscovy, Poland, Prussia, Little Tartary 14. Denmark & Sweden 15. A New Map of the Baltick 16. Great-Britain 17. The South Part of Great-Britain 18. The North Part of Great-Britain 19. Ireland 20. Germany 21. The Electorate of Brunswick – Lunenburgh 22. A New Map of the Course of the Rhine 23. The United Provinces of The Netherlands 24. Flanders or The Austrian Netherlands 25. France 26. Spain & Portugal 27. Italy 28. The Upper Part of Italy 29. The Turkish Empire 30. An Historical Map of the Roman Empire

    STUBBS COMMISSIONED BY AN IRISH PEER IN 1789

    Monday, December 4th, 2017

    George Stubbs, A.R.A. LIVERPOOL 1724 – 1806 LONDON TWO BAY HUNTERS IN A PADDOCK  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Irish interest in Sotheby’s Old Masters evening sale in London on December 6 will centre on a 1789 work by George Stubbs (1724-1806). Two Bay Hunters in a Paddock was commissioned by the Irish peer Arthur Annesley, 8th Viscount Valentia.  It is estimated at £1.5-2 million.  Highlights of the sale include one of the last and most important candlelight pictures by Joseph Wright of Derby left in private hands, a luminous 18th-century view of Venice by Bellotto, two recently rediscovered landscapes by Constable, and a gallery of portraits covering 300 years, from Cranach and Titian to Van Dyck.

    Alex Bell, Worldwide Co-Chairman of Sotheby’s Old Master Paintings Department: “Strong imagery, luminous works and great names have long been driving the Old Masters market but in the last couple of years, we have witnessed a surge of interest in Early Renaissance and high Renaissance paintings among international collectors. With their simple and striking imagery, these works often find their way in very eclectic collections. We are therefore delighted that nearly half of the works in the sale consist of Renaissance pictures. We are also privileged to present rare works by three of the greatest and most influential British artists of the 18th century whose work transcends national boundaries and speaks to a wider global sensibility: Constable, Wright of Derby and Stubbs.”

    FINE JEWELLERY AND WATCHES AT JAMES ADAM

    Sunday, December 3rd, 2017

    A fancy coloured diamond ring (50,000-80,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 60,000 AT HAMMER

    A fancy coloured diamond ring is the most expensively estimated lot at the James Adam evening sale of fine jewellery and watches in Dublin on December 5.  The seven carat cushion shaped diamond is estimated at 50,000-80,000. There are rings, watches, bangles, necklaces, earrings and brooches among the offerings.  The catalogue is online. Here is a small selection:

    A gentleman’s Rolex Oyster watch (5,500-7,500)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 13,000 AT HAMMER

    A diamond bracelet (12,000-14,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 10,000 AT HAMMER

    A sapphire and diamond ring (5,000-7,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 7,500 AT HAMMER

    AN ORIGINAL BOOK OF PLATES BY JAMES MALTON AT FONSIE MEALY

    Sunday, December 3rd, 2017

    Leinster House looks positively serene in this 1791 view by James Malton. It is part of an original coloured copy of a book of plates – colourfully described by the auctioneers as Ireland’s greatest plate book – which comes up at Fonsie Mealy’s rare book sale at the Tara Towers Hotel, Dublin on December 5.

    Malton, who had been employed as a draughtsman by James Gandon during the building of the Custom House – he was dismissed for breaches of confidence and other irregularities – completed a series of drawings of Dublin buildings from which the famous set of views was engraved.

    His work offers what is undoubtedly the most important pictorial record of Dublin life in the late 18th century. The book, estimated at 7,000-9,000, is part of a sale of rare books, manuscripts, maps and fine wines.

    UPDATE:  THIS MADE 8,500 AT HAMMER

    IRISH AND INTERNATIONAL ART AT RHA AUCTION

    Friday, December 1st, 2017

    Morgan O’Driscoll’s Irish and International art auction, now on view at the RHA Gallery, takes place at 6 pm on December 4.  The catalogue, which is online, features 159 lots.  Here is a small selection:

    SEAN SCULLY (B.1945)9.2.89 (70,000-100,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 66,000 AT HAMMER

    CHARLES J. MCAULEY (1900-1999)Unloading the Catch (7,000-10,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 6,000 AT HAMMER

    JOAN MIRO (1893-1983) SPANISH Silencio 7/25 (From Mai-Ku) (1967) (1,200-1,600)  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR 1,000

    Rory Breslin – Le Petit Mort (4,000-6,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 3,800

    Anna Linnane – Horse (1,500-2,500)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400