Information about Art, Antiques and Auctions in Ireland and around the world
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  • Archive for November, 2012


    Thursday, November 29th, 2012

    A Chinese Ming-style blue and white yuhuchunping vase made 180,000 at Sheppards in Durrow today.

    This white jade Qing seal made 630,000 at Sheppards in Durrow. (Click on image to enlarge).

    The base stamp with Sheppards seal of approval. (Click on image to enlarge).

    A Chinese Qing period white jade seal made 630,000 at Sheppards in Durrow today. The top lot came at the culmination of a highly successful three day Dublin and Provincial auction.  From the Marie Louise Beauvoir collection the jade seal, just three centimeters high, was a classic sleeper lot. It had been estimated at a mere 4,000-6,000.  The highest price ever paid for an antique lot at auction in Ireland came after a 20 minute bidding battle between a buyer on the telephone from Beijing and another on the internet from the Chinese city of Jingdezhen.

    The second most expensive lot in the sale, a Chinese Ming blue and white yuhuchunping vase estimated at 150,000-200,000 sold for 180,000.


    Thursday, November 29th, 2012

    The Night has Gone by Jack B. Yeats made a hammer price of 225,000 at de Veres.

    Abstract Composition by Mainie Jellet (1897-1944) made 74,000 at hammer at de Veres.

    The Night Has Gone, a 1947 oil on canvas by Jack B. Yeats, was the top lot at de Veres Irish art auction in Dublin this week. It made a hammer price of 225,000. Safe Harbour by Yeats made 90,000, Mainie Jellett’s Abstract Composition made 74,000 and Fresh Horses by Yeats made 40,000.  Quiet Snow in St. Stephen’s Green by Camille Souter made 18,500 and Mending the Nets by Norah McGuinness sold for 11,000. A bronze horse by Patrick O’Reilly sold for 7,000. A work from John Shinnors’ Kite Series made 8,200.


    Thursday, November 29th, 2012

    A telegram from General Eisenhower on the eve of VE Day in 1945 and one from General Foch on Armistice Day in 1918 are among the lots at Mealy’s  Christmas sale of rare books, manuscripts and collectibles at the Clyde Court Hotel in Dublin on December 4 and 5 next. Among more than 1,400 items in the auction are rare manuscripts, original stained glass windows by Harry Clarke, watercolours, drawings and a collection of wine.
    The Eisenower telegram orders all offensive operations by Allied Expeditionary Force to cease and troops to remain in present positions effective immediately. It was sent from the Supreme Headquarters Allied Expeditionary Force on May 7 and a public announcement was not made until the following day, designated VE Day. The telegram from Marshal Foch sent on Armistice Day 1918 orders a cessation of hostilities later that day. It is addressed to Commander in Chief and was received at 6.10 a.m. at Dublin Wireless. Foch replaced John D.P. French, 1st Earl of Ypres, as Commander of the Allied Forces in the closing stages of the Great War. Effectively dismissed, French was recalled and “promoted” to Commander in Chief Home Forces and, in May 1918, Lord Lieutenant of Ireland. It was sent to French, then in Dublin. Each of the telegrams is in a conservation frame and each one is estimated at 3,000-4,000.
    There is a Yeats hand coloured poster announcing a 1918 meeting to recover the Lane pictures for Ireland, probably made at the orders of Lady Gregory, who organised the meeting. It is estimated at 5,000-7,000. An original stained glass window, The Visitation, from the Harry Clarke Studio has an estimate of 3,000-4,000. A newly discovered mainly 18th century Irish manuscript with dictionaries of place names and genealogies of Irish families – a rare surviving example of the native Irish Manuscript Book – is estimated at 10,000-15,000 and a signed first edition of Margaret Mitchell’s Gone With the Wind from 1936 is estimated at 1,000-1,500. (Click on any image to enlarge it).

    Telegram from General Eisenhower on the eve of V.E. Day 1945.  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,800

    Telegram from Marshal Foch on Armistice Day 1918.  UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,400

    First Edition of Gone With the Wind signed by Margaret Mitchell. UPDATE: THIS MADE 900

    Original stained glass window, Harry Clarke Studios: “The Visitation. UPDATE: THIS MADE 2,800

    A hand coloured Yeats poster from 1918 about a meeting to recover the Lane pictures for Ireland.  UPDATE: THIS MADE 5,000

    An 18th century Gaelic manuscript at Mealy’s sale in Dublin. (Click to enlarge). UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD


    Thursday, November 29th, 2012

    XU BEIHONG (1895-1953) Magpies on Branches Estimate: HK$ 2,500,000 -3,000,000 Sold for: HK$ 21,940,000/US$ 2,845,618. Image courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. (Click on image to enlarge)

    HONG Kong sales of Asian Contemporary Art, Chinese paintings, ceramics, jewels, watches and fine and rare wines generated more than $333 million US at Christie’s in the past week.
    “The momentum initiated at Christie’s auctions earlier this month in New York and Geneva has carried here to Hong Kong, sending a message to the market as the year of the Dragon comes to an end. The past 6 days and 13 sales at Christie’s Hong Kong were characterized by diversity and strong but not speculative prices. It totalled more than HK$ 2.6billion/US 333.8million.
    These figures dispel any doubt that the Chinese and Asian markets remain vibrant and strong, with active buyers and major collectors from the region participating at high levels. The quality of works offered consolidates the role of Hong Kong as a leading auction centre that attracts a global audience competing for the best works available.” said, François Curiel, President of Christie’s Asia.

    A Burmese ruby (62.46 cts) and diamond necklace, by James W.Currens for Faidee. US$83,800 per ct. Estimate: HK$ 28,000,000-44,000,000. Sold for: HK$ 39,860,000/US$ 5,169,842. Image courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. (Click to enlarge).

    CHU TEH-CHUN (B. 1920) La forêt blanche II. Sold for: HK$ 60,020,000/US$ 7,784,594. Image courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd. (Click to enlarge).


    Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

    Lucien Le Moine Hospices de Beaune Corton Vergennes Cuvée Paul Chanson 2005. (Click on image to enlarge).

    Three bottles Domaine de la Romanée Conti, Romanée Conti. (Click on image to enlarge).

    The el Bulli wine cellar will be auctioned by Sotheby’s on April 3, 2013 in Hong Kong and on April 26 in New York. Over the two sales 8,807 bottles will be offered, with a pre-sale estimate of $1.1-1.6 million. Highlights from Spain include seven different vintages of Vega Sicilia Valbuena from 1995 -2002; nine different vintages and 157 bottles of Pingus; six different vintages of Clos Erasmus; four different vintages of Clos Mogador: over 225 bottles from Bodegas Artadi, featuring their Grandes Añadas and Pagos Viejos; eight different vintages of Alvaro Palacios’ Finca Dofi from 1994 – 2007 and 13 different vintages of Alvaro Palacios’ L’Ermita from 1993 – 2007.
    Under the leadership of Ferran Adrià and Juli Soler, the cutting edge gastronomy of elBulli is recognized as having changed culinary history by reworking ingredients into new forms and combinations. It was feted with awards including topping the Restaurant Magazine list of the world’s 50 best restaurants five times, with Adrià frequently named the world’s greatest chef. Since closing in July 2011 elBulli is transforming to become the elBulli Foundation, an experimental centre looking at the process of innovation and creativity and sharing the results via the new website Bullipedia. Proceeds will benefit the el Bulli Foundation.
    Rhone highlights include 415 Bottles from Château de Beaucastel and multiple vintages of Hermitage from JL.Chave, Hermitage, La Chapelle from Paul Jaboulet Aîné and Côte Rôtie, La Landonne, La Mouline and La Turque from Guigal. From Bordeaux all five First Growths are present in multiple vintages highlighted by full cases of bottles and magnums of Château Latour 2005 and five vintages of Yquem from 1989 -2001. There will be over 1,400 bottles of Red Burgundy and 1,000 bottles of White Burgundy. Other highlights include 1,300 bottles of Vin de Pays de l’Hérault, Domaine de la Grange des Pères from vintages spanning 1992 to 2001, multiple offerings of rare Oloroso and Solera Sherry dating back to 1830 and 70 bottles of Silex and Pur Sang from the late Didier Dagueneau.


    Wednesday, November 28th, 2012

    Daniel Maclise, R.A. (1806-1870) The Wrestling Scene in ‘As You Like It’ signed and dated ‘D MACLISE 1854’. Image courtesy Christie’s Images Ltd., 2012. (Click to enlarge).   UPDATE:  THIS SOLD FOR £337,250

    One of the finest works by Cork born artist Daniel Maclise comes up at Christie’s sale of Victorian and British Impressionist Art in London on December 13.  The artist often drew inspiration from Shakepeare and The Wrestling Scene from “As You Like It” is estimated at £300,000-500,000.  Maclise loved the theatre and two of his closest friends, novelist Charles Dickens and journalist and critic John Forster, were amateur actors. The painting at Christie’s is a rare illustration on such a scale.

    One of Ireland’s best known history paintings, The  Marriage of Strongbow and Aoife by Maclise, is currently undergoing a major restoration at the National Gallery in Dublin funded by a grant from the Bank of America.

    The sale will feature three rediscovered works by important artists of the Victorian age: Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1828-1882), William James Webbe (fl.1853-1878), and Frederic, Lord Leighton, P.R.A. (1830-1896). There is a selection of watercolours by Archibald Thorburn featuring  garden birds, wildfowl on the shore, game birds and work for ornithological publications spanning over twenty-five years of his working life.  Most are from a single private collection formed over the last thirty years.


    Tuesday, November 27th, 2012

    The piano from the film Casablanca.  UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR  $602,500

    One of the world’s favourite film props, the piano from the 1942 film Casablanca comes up at Sotheby’s  in New York on December 14.  The romance between Rick (Humphrey Bogart) and Ilsa (Ingrid Bergman) is movingly established during the famous flashback scene in Paris at La Belle Aurore. The Paris piano on which Sam plays “As Time Goes By” – the key prop in the scene – is estimated at $800,000/1.2 million.

    The American Film Institute has ranked Casablanca the most romantic movie of all time and the most quotable. Casablanca won three Oscars in 1943 for Best Picture, Best Writing (Screenplay) and Best Director, with Oscar nominations in five other categories, including Best Score.

    UPDATE: IT SOLD FOR  $602,500. It was last auctioned in 1988 when a Japanese collector bought it for $154,000.  Other notable film memorabilia prices include James Bond’s Aston Martin which sold for $4.6 million, Marilyn Monroe’s White Dress which made $5.6 million and Dorothy’s red slippers from The Wizard of Oz which made $612,000.


    Sunday, November 25th, 2012

    This mid-18th century carved centre table with characteristic Irish flourishes made £169,250 at Bonhams. (Click on image to enlarge).

    AN Irish George III carved mahogany centre table made £169,250 at Bonhams in London. Bonhams catalogued the table as possibly Irish but the view of the Irish trade was that it is definitely an Irish piece and it sold accordingly. The table has a shell motif, scrolled apron and foliate carving to the legs, all strongly suggestive of an Irish mid 18th century origin.
    In a catalogue footnote Bonhams observed: ” two elements in the design of the table here do not appear to be obviously paralleled on any tables securely identified as Irish. These are the gadrooned carving to the perimeter of the top and the presence of claw and ball feet. A possible exception to the latter is a carved mahogany tea table, in the collection of the Winterthur Museum, Delaware, with similar claw and ball feet, previously thought to be American and now possibly considered to be Irish”.

    The table sold at Bonhams shared characteristics with tables illustrated in a 2007 book on Irish furniture by The Knight of Glin and James Peil.


    Saturday, November 24th, 2012

    THE selection at Sheppard’s  three day Dublin and Provincial sale in Durrow, Co. Laois on November 27, 28 and 29 is broad and varied. It includes period furniture, art, decorative art and Asian art. The auction, at which you can bid on-line, gets underway at 10.30 a.m. on each day.  Here is a small selection from numerous highlights (you can click on any image to enlarge it):

    A rare Irish mid-eighteenth century cutlery stand at Sheppards.

    A Chinese Ming-style blue and white yuhuchunping vase at Sheppards (150,000-200,000).

    An 18th century Chippendale silver table, c1780 at Sheppards.

    A silver figural salt cellar by Julius Alexandrovitch Rappoport (1864 – 1916), Fabergé workmaster in St. Petersburg, at Sheppards.


    Thursday, November 22nd, 2012

    THE auction of Important Irish Art at Whyte’s in Dublin on November 26 offers a broad selection including many contemporary works at very reasonable prices. The catalogue, which is on-line, lists 217 lots. The front cover is a 1945 oil by Jack B. Yeats entitled Against the Stream. One of a number of works by Yeats in the sale, it is estimated at 50,000-70,000. The main Yeats in the auction, The Comforter from 1952, is estimated at 150,000-200,000.
    A colour inverted Aubusson tapestry by Louis le Brocquy entitled Adam and Eve in the Garden is estimated at 40,000-60,000. Given that Irish art did not perform spectacularly well at recent London sales at Sotheby’s and Bonhams there will be much interest in how major works fare at Whytes, as this is the first of three sales of important Irish art in Dublin in the next two weeks.  The venue for the viewing and sale is Clyde Hall at the RDS.

    UPDATE: The auction grossed over one million euro, with 75% of lots sold. le Brocquy’s Adam and Eve tapestry was the top lot. Over 250 bidders registered from the US, Canada, Australia, Hong Kong, India, Switzerland, France, Great Britain and Ireland.

    The Comforter by Jack B. Yeats at Whyte’s. (Click on image to enlarge). UPDATE: THIS WAS UNSOLD

    Adam and Eve in the Garden by Louis le Brocquy at Whyte’s. (Click on image to enlarge).  UPDATE: THIS MADE 70,000.