Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
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    Sunday, May 7th, 2017

    There is a maritime theme to the 139th annual exhibition of the Dublin Painting and Sketching Club which runs at Dun Laoghaire County Hall from May 8 to May 21.  Members decided to mark the 200th anniversary in 2017 of the laying of the foundation stone of Dun Laoghaire Harbour and its east pier.  Around 250 works by 100 artists are being shown in an exhibition sponsored by auctioneers Whyte’s.   A quarter of them are maritime along with landscape, still life, portraiture, streetscapes, floral, animal and life studies.  Here is a small selection:

    Pat O Breartuin – Tall Ships

    Marie Fallon – After the shower, Dun Laoghaire East Pier

    Aidan Hickey – The Iris sails again 1895

    Patrick Cahill – Boat on the hard


    Wednesday, May 3rd, 2017

    Basil Blackshaw, Mark O’Neill, John Kingerlee and William Conor are among the artists who feature in Morgan O’Driscoll’s current online auction of Irish art.  There are 173 lots on offer, including 14 works of sculpture. The sale runs until Monday, May 15.  The catalogue is online.  Here is a small selection:

    Basil Blackshaw HRHA RUA (1932-2016)
    Fancy Dress Party (3,000-4,000)  UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Mark O’Neill (b.1963)
    Ballybunion Red (1,000-1,500)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,000 AT HAMMER

    William Conor RHA RUA ROI (1881-1968)
    The Shawl (2,000-3,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 1,700 AT HAMMER

    John Kingerlee (b.1936)
    Farewell (2015) (2,000-4,000)  UPDATE: THIS MADE 4,600 AT HAMMER


    Monday, May 1st, 2017

    The collection of Edward Haughey Lord Ballyedmond (1944-2014), who died in a helicopter crash, will come up at Sotheby’s in London on May 23-24. The collection stands as testament to Lord Ballyedmond’s unerring eye as a collector, displaying a lifelong passion for the finest art and antiques, with a rare attention to detail. Around 700 objects mostly drawn from a magnificent townhouse on London’s Belgrave Square, described as the “Downton Abbey of our times” will come under the hammer. This extraordinary London home formed the backdrop to life at the highest level of British society. 

    Born in Kilcurry, County Louth, Ireland, Lord Ballyedmond rose from humble beginnings to make his fortune founding and steering to extraordinary success the Norbrook Group, a pharmaceutical company based in Newry, Northern Ireland. Equally influential in the world of politics as he was in business, Lord Ballyedmond is renowned as only the second person in history – after the Marquess of Lansdowne in the 1920s – to have sat in the upper houses of both the British and Irish parliaments. His standing was such that the United States government was amongst the many to pay tribute to his remarkable accomplishments: “His achievements brought significant employment to Northern Ireland and other places around the world, while his philanthropic endeavours helped improve the quality of life of countless others.” 

    Inspired by the Regency and the neoclassical designs of British architect, Robert Adam and entranced by the salons of 18th-century London, Lord Ballyedmond transformed a once dormant property on one of London’s most prestigious squares into a modern evocation of a great Georgian town house, specifically designed to entertain on an ambassadorial scale. His collection  was the fruit of selective and judicious collecting, both at auction and from dealers, with an unmatched attention to the finest of details. Paintings, tapestries, porcelain, silver and furniture were all thoughtfully put together to create something which would enthrall and delight visitors to Belgrave Square.

    The Ballyedmond Collection Part II: Gentlemen’s Accessories Online, an online sale of gentlemen’s dressing accessories, will open on May 23. Lord Ballyedmond was an elegant man and discerning collector; cufflinks, tie-pins and watches by great names including Cartier, Van Cleef and Arpels, Boucheron and Tiffany & Co. adorn this online offering with estimates ranging from £150 to £6,000.


    Monday, May 1st, 2017

    The complete works of mapmaker John Speed come up at Sotheby’s in London on May 9. Dating to the 17th century the collection includes the first detailed map to show the provinces of Ireland, the first set of county maps and  the first comprehensive set of English town plans.  The 96 hand coloured maps are expected to realised £100,000-150,000 at Sotheby’s sale of Travel, Atlases, Maps and Natural History. Speeds The Theatre of the Empire of Great Britain was first published in 1612.  His Prospect of the Most Famous Parts of the World was first produced in 1627.

    At the same sale two rare wall maps of Australia and Asia by Joan Blaeu (1596-1673) rediscovered in a private residence in Italy are together expected to make more than £250,000. Blaeu was cartographer to the Dutch East India Company.

    John Speed – The Kingdome of Ireland

    John Speed – The Kingdome of Great Britaine and Ireland

    Joan Blaeu – Archipelagus orientalis sive Asiaticus

    Joan Blaeu – Archipelagus orientalis sive Asiaticus


    Monday, May 1st, 2017
    An 18th century Irish half moon side table in the manner of William Moore will be a furniture highlight at Hegarty’s evening sale in Bandon, Co. Cork on May 9.  The 300 lot auction will feature contents from The Glebe House at Nohoval which dates to 1816.  A pair of c1810 Regency Irish card tables is another highlight.  Both lots are estimated at 6,000-10,000.
    An early Victorian long case clock is labelled Patterson of Fermy and is estimated at 2,000-4,000.

    There is some English oak furniture including a Queen Anne Welsh dresser (500-1,000), a large hall bench (500-1,000) and a Jacobean style mirror backed pedestal sideboard (500-1,000). Collectibles include a lady’s silver vanity set with Birmingham marks to around 1899-1900.  Artists in the sale include Martin Finnin, Graham Knuttel and Arthur Maderson.

    18th century Irish side table in the manner of William Moore  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,700 AT HAMMER

    A Queen Anne Welsh dresser.


    Thursday, April 27th, 2017

    Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Untitled 1982

    Jean-Michel Basquiat’s Untitled from 1982 will lead Sotheby’s Contemporary Art evening auction in New York on May 18.  This  monumental work has remained virtually unseen since it last appeared on the market in May 1984. At the time the work was completed he was virtually unknown to the art world.  Purchased at auction for $19,000 in 1984 it is now estimated to make in excess of $60 million.

    It is one of a number of iconic American post-war paintings in a sale that also features Roy Lichtenstein, Andy Warhol, Robert Rauschenberg and Cy Twombly, as well as European masters including David Hockney, Rudolf Stingel and Gerhard Richter.

    Grégoire Billault, Head of Sotheby’s Contemporary Art Department in New York, commented: “It is an enormous pleasure to bring a Basquiat of this magnitude to the market. The scale, subject matter, date and freshness, combined with recent record prices and increased demand for the artist’s work, make May the ideal time to present a masterpiece of this caliber – a truly outstanding achievement of recent art history – to the market.”



    Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

    Egon Schiele’s – Danaë

    Egon Schiele’s first masterpiece Danaë will lead Sotheby’s evening sale of Impressionist and Modern Art in New York on May 16.  Painted in 1909, the work marks Schiele’s first major oil painting of a female nude, and is estimated to sell for $30–40 million.  The artist was just 19 years when he produced this extraordinary example of his daring technique. Danaë introduces the artist’s iconic aesthetic, and epitomizes the Jugendstil movement’s influence at the time. The composition also pays homage to Schiele’s informal mentor, Gustav Klimt, who championed the young artist throughout his career.

    Painted in 1969, a little more than a week before his 88th birthday, Pablo Picasso’s self-portrait Tête d’homme  is estimated at  $8/12 million.  It was painted in 1969, a little more than a week before his 88th birthday and was first exhibited in a one-man show that the artist curated himself in the hallowed halls of the Palace of the Popes in Avignon. Works emerging from a distinguished private collection include Impressionist pictures by Paul Signac, Alfred Sisley and Pierre Bonnard, as well as an important early sculpture by Alexander Archipenko. The group is led by Signac’s Le Pin de Bertaud ($3.5/5 million), a spectacular view of Saint-Tropez painted in 1899-1900

    Paul Signac – Le Pin de Bertaud

    Pablo Picasso’s self-portrait Tête d’homme



    Tuesday, April 25th, 2017

    Irish artists whose work is enjoyed and collected by auction goers will feature at Dolan’s May Bank Holiday sale at Kelly’s Resort Hotel in Rosslare, Co. Wexford on April 30. Kenneth Webb, Evie Hone, Sean Keating, Frank McKelvey, James Humbert Craig, Hans Iten, Helen O’Hara, Markey Robinson, Tony O’Malley, Mark O’Neill, Sean McSweeney, Norman Teeling, Carina Scott, Arthur Maderson, Henry Morgan, Charles Harper, Mat Grogan and Carina Scott and Cecil Maguire all feature.  There is sculpture by John Behan and Cynthia Moran. Here is a small selection:

    Mark O’Neill’s “Show Day, Tinahely” (2,500-3,000)

    Carina Scott’s “Silhouette (white Connemara) (700-1,000)

    Mark O’Neill’s “Up Close and Personal” (1.400-2,000)

    Carina Scott’s “Moonlight” (1,200-1,800)


    Thursday, April 20th, 2017

    CONSTANTIN BRANCUSI (1867-1957) La muse endormie , patinated bronze with gold leaf, Length: 10 ½ inches  UPDATE: THIS SOLD FOR $57.3 MILLION, A WORLD RECORD

    Constantin Brancusi’s sculpture La muse endormie will be a highlight  at Christie’s evening sale of Impressionist and Modern Art on May 15 in New York. Estimated at $20-30 million La muse endormie counts among the greatest achievements in sculptural history. Its drastic purification of form and emotional resonance mark the dawn of a new sculptural language.

    First conceived in marble in 1909-1910, La muse endormie was cast by Brancusi in six bronze versions by 1913. Four bronzes today are housed in museums—The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York, The Art Institute of Chicago, and two examples in the Musée National d’Art Moderne, Centre Georges Pompidou in Paris—while two, including the present work, remain in private collections. This one was acquired by the distinguished French collector Jacques UImann in the 1950’s and has remained in his family to this day.

    Jessica Fertig, Senior Vice President, Head of Evening Sale, Impressionist and Modern Art, said: La muse endormie has a magical amplitude — displaying a formal genius and wondrously modulated patina. Brancusi considered each of his La muse endormie bronzes a unique work of art, rather than as part of a uniform edition. He therefore oversaw the patination process during casting to ensure variations between every bronze. Brancusi delighted in the varying effects of color and finish, always aware of the diversity of expression he could achieve through patination. The present sculpture has a rich, warm patina that Brancusi heightened by gilding sections, a contrast he described to the legendary American collector John Quinn as enhancing the expressive power of his art.”


    Thursday, April 20th, 2017

    Works by Henry Moore, Alberto Giacometti, Jean Arp, Germaine Richier and Marino Marini from the Finn family collection will feature at Sotheby’s Impressionist and Modern Art evening sale in New York on May 16. Together the five sculptures are estimated in excess of $17 million. This group is united further by the fact that each piece was conceived in the 1950s, during the period of turmoil and uncertainty following World War II.

    The five exceptional modern sculptures were collected by David and Laura Finn. David Finn, co founder of pr firm Ruder Finn, is a celebrated sculpture photographer whose prolific work championed the art form.  Through their collecting, they developed not only a staunch patronage but also enduring friendships with many artists – particularly Henry Moore. Mr. Finn photographed and published Moore’s sculptures over a number of decades, playing a vital role in expanding the artist’s audience internationally. Moore hand-selected Seated Woman (estimate $4/6 million) for the couple during a visit to his studio.

    Henry Moore
    Seated Woman
    Conceived in 1956-1957 ($4-6 million)

    Germaine Richier
    Don Quichotte
    Conceived in 1950-51 ($1.5-2.5 million)

    Jean Arp
    Torse de Pyrénées
    Conceived in 1959 $1.5-2.5 million

    Alberto Giacometti
    Buste de Diego
    Conceived circa 1957 ($10-15 million)