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  • RARE SEURAT OIL STUDIES AT CHRISTIE’S

    April 14th, 2021
    Georges Seurat – Paysage et personnages  (La jupe rose), 1884 ($7-10 million)

    Two exceedingly rare studies for Georges Seurat’s masterpiece Un Dimanche d’été à l’Ile de La Grande Jatte will highlight Christie’s 20th Century livestreamed evening sale in New York on May 11. The two oil panels, being sold from the family of Boston collector Robert Treat Paine II, are among the few examples of Seurat’s extensive preparatory practice for this masterpiece to remain in private hands. More than half of the oil studies for La Grande Jatte are in the collections of prestigious museums, including the Art Institute of Chicago, The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, the Musée d’Orsay, Paris, and the National Gallery of Art, London. Seurats Bathers at Asnières, 1884 has long been one of the most popular paintings in London’s National Gallery.

    Both Seurat panels remained in the artist’s possession until his untimely death in 1890, at which point, Paysage et personnages (La jupe rose) was acquired shortly thereafter by a fellow artist, the Belgian painter Jean de Greef. The painting would pass through the collection of the Symbolist poet and art dealer Charles Vignier during the early twentieth century, before crossing the Atlantic in the mid-1920s. Similarly, Le Saint-Cyrien was gifted by the artist’s mother to the painter Henri-Edmond Cross, a close friend of Seurat. It subsequently passed to Félix Fénéon, the influential French art critic who coined the term Neo-Impressionism, before also making its way to the Americas, where it was reunited with Paysage et personnages (La jupe rose) in 1929.

    Un Dimanche d’été à l’Ile de La Grande Jatte is in the collection of The Art Institute of Chicago.

    Georges Seurat – Le Sainte Cyrien. $3-5 million

    NOW THE TIME TO GET GOING ON THE LIBRARY COLLECTION AT ADAMS

    April 14th, 2021

    This 17th century William and Mary oak and elm refectory table is lot 17 at the James Adam timed online Library Collection sale which begins to close at 2 pm today. The planked top is in figured elm above a carved frieze with a trailing leaf pattern. It is carved with the initials WB and dated 1649. The table is estimated at €5,000-8,000. UPDATE: THIS MADE 4,200 AT HAMMER

    WIDE RANGING SALE WITH OVER 1,200 LOTS

    April 13th, 2021

    With everything from a Georgian oak cased tavern wall clock to designer loungers the Easter Interiors and Historical sale by Victor Mee Auctioneers in conjunction with Niall Mullen showcases items from the 18th century to the present day. The auction of 1,214 lots is online today and tomorrow and includes items from the collection of late antique dealer and owner of Beaufield Mews Jill Cox.

    Lot 282 is this Georgian bow fronted chest (€300-€500). UPDATE: THIS MADE 300 AT HAMMER

    IRISH SILVER CANDLESTICKS ONLINE AT SOTHEBY’S NEW YORK

    April 13th, 2021

    This set of four Irish silver candlesticks made in Dublin c1760 features at Sotheby’s New York sale of European Furniture, Silver and Ceramics running online until April 19. There are no makers marks but the set is estimated at $12,000-$18,000. Other Irish lots on the catalogue include an Irish George II Revival mahogany side table with marble top and a silver porringer.

    ORNATE 19TH CENTURY IRISH MIRROR AT ADAMS BLACKROCK

    April 13th, 2021

    Among the lots at the evening sale of The Fitzwilliam Square collection at Adams, Blackrock, Dublin today (April 13) is this ornate 19th century giltwood Irish pier mirror. There is a canopied pediment above seated figures flanked by birds and scrolled rockwork branches carved with dogs. It is conservatively estimated at €1,000-€1,500. There are 432 lots of fine art, furniture and silver and the auction gets underway at 6 pm.

    Giltwood Irish pier mirror. UPDATE: THIS MADE 9,500 AT HAMMER

    ART FROM STUDIO OF FERGUS O’RYAN AT ADAMS

    April 12th, 2021

    Watercolours, sketches and oil paintings from the studio of Fergus O’Ryan, who died in 1989 and was at one time one of Ireland’s most popular artists, are at a timed online sale at James Adam in Dublin until April 21. The “Travels, Painter and Palette” sale draws on his love of travel and penchant for locations that were off the beaten track. There are Dublin and Connemara views as well as work from France, Spain, Greece and Italy.   He and his wife May were keen hikers and much of his work is from the 1950’s, before mass travel and tourism began. He painted in Girona and Salamanca in Spain and made art in Venice and Santorini. Estimates range from €100-€800 and proceeds will be donated to Our Lady’s Hospice. Born in 1910 Fergus O’Ryan studied at the School of Art in his native Limerick, moved to Dublin, lectured at the National College of Art and was a member of the Royal Hibernian Academy.

    A view, possibly Santorini

    DEATH OF ARTIST CHARLIE WHISKER

    April 11th, 2021

    The Northern Irish artist Charlie Whisker has died. His work  is in the collections of the Arts Council, Allied Irish Banks, the Ulster Museum and private collectors such as members of U2, Steven Soderberg, John Boorman, Paul McGuinness and Henry Mountcharles. Born in 1949 he taught at the NCAD in the 1980’s and worked as a video director in Los Angeles with artists including Bob Dylan in the 1980’s. He was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers at the age of 63.

    ONCE BELOW A TIME by Charlie Whisker, with The Titanic in the background, sold for €2,900 at Whyte’s in 2012

    FORD COLLECTION AT CHRISTIE’S IN LONDON

    April 11th, 2021

    Decorative and fine arts from the London and country homes of Mrs. Henry Ford at Eaton Square and Turville Grange, Oxfordshire will come under the hammer at Christie’s on April 15.  The sale is led by Impressionist works including a self portrait by Edouard Vuillard.  The decorative arts are led by a Louis XV ormolu-mounted Chinese black-lacquer commode by Laurent Felix and a George III Pembroke table attributed to Thomas Chippendale. Silver includes a George VI silver cigar box inset with grass from the sod cut by Edsel Ford in 1929 when breaking ground for the Dagenham Ford motor factory.

    Louis XV c1755 black lacquered commode

    RICOCHET EFFECT OF PANDEMIC ON NEW BUYERS

    April 10th, 2021

    The ricochet effect of the pandemic in our beckoning post lockdown world is a cause for speculation.  Many new online buyers at auction houses are tech savvy youngsters. This much needed infusion is a sign of hope for the future of the trade.  Whether they incline to online buying post lockdown, or turn up in person to bid is anyones guess. Auction action online is now normal, as distinct from new normal, and collectors can and do expect to range far and wide in pursuit of more variety and price points in any given week than ever before. So what next?  In the immediate future there is more than enough art, antique furniture, collectibles and historical memorabilia at auction in Ireland to keep us all occupied and out of trouble.

    Image of August Strindberg by Louis le Brocquy at Morgan O’Driscoll

    An oil by Arthur Maderson (€6,000-€8,000) and a set of Cork 11 bar dining chairs (€1,500-€2,000) are among the highlights at Woodwards sale in Cork on April 17. More than 300 lots will come under the hammer.  Among them are a  Louis XV bonheur du jour (€1,000-€2,000), a George II card table (€750-€1,500), a Queen Anne walnut chest on stand (€1,000-€1,600), a five piece cast iron garden suite (€1,600-€2,200) and a Georgian walnut card table (€700-€1,500).

    The range of antique furniture at Woodwards includes a walnut davenport,  an Edwardian bow fronted sideboard, a William IV rosewood card table, a Regency tip top table, a Georgian drop leaf dining table, a three tier dumb waiter, an Edwardian knife box and a selection of cellos and violins.  There is a silver owl pepperette by George Richards, an ormolu figured mantel clock, a mariners brass theodolite, an Art Deco dancing figure and a Cork Distillers Irish Whiskey sign.

    A George II walnut chest on stand at Woodwards.

    The April version of the new monthly timed online auction at Hegarty’s features over 300 lots and closes on April 11. Highlights this time include a coloured limited edition lithograph by Mark Chagall of a stained glass window, a Royal Humane Society Award given in 1904, an oil of the Great Mosque, Cairo by Peter Sunderland, a collection of antique optometry equipment and an electric machine for nervous diseases patented in 1854.

    Among the 196 lots that Morgan O’Driscoll will offer at his Irish and International online art sale on April 19 are two major head studies by Louis le Brocquy of August Strindberg and William Shakespeare from 1980 and 1981 respectively.  Each one is estimated at €100,000-€150,000. In a catalogue note Peter Murray recounts how, one day in 1964 at a time when the artist was feeling dissatisfied and unable to find a way forward, he chanced to visit the Musee de l’Homme in Paris was inspired by a selection of Polynesian painted skulls.  The Celts visualised the head as a kind of magic box housing the spirit and le Brocquy was directed towards the idea of encapsulating a lost human presence rather than a living portrait subject. A three day house clearance auction by Matthews of Kells gets underway online at noon today.  On offer are contents from the Co. Louth home of the late Professor Kieran Taaffe, head of international affairs at Dublin Institute of Technology and a lifetime collector.  More than 2,100 lots will be sold including Irish and International art, old silver, antique furniture, rugs, gilded mirrors, books, oriental items and collectibles. 

    Meantime the Co. Cavan auctioneer Victor Mee will offer a selection of 1,206 lots at an online Easter interiors and historical sale on Aril 13 and 14.

    EARLIEST KNOWN PORTRAIT OF KING GEORGE II

    April 9th, 2021

    THIS gold medal from an old Irish collection showing the earliest known portrait of Georg August, Electoral Prince of Brunswick-Calenburg-Hanover, who would later become King George II, sold for £6,820 at Dix Noonan Webb in London this week. Dating from 1701, the year of his 18th birthday, the medal shows the Prince, who was the last British monarch born outside England, on one side and Schloss Herrenhausen, Hanover on the other. It went to a buyer in Holland.